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NFL: Why don’t the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers meet every season?

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The National Football League (NFL) is made up of 32 franchises established in various cities and regions of the United States.

The tournament is divided into two conferences : the National Conference (NFC) and the American Conference (AFC). In turn, each conference is made up of four divisions (North, South, East and West) and each of them, by four teams.

The tournament in which these teams compete is divided into two phases: 

In the regular season, each team will play 17 games (12 from their conference and five from the other) in 18 weeks, with each team getting one bye week over the course of the season. The four division champions and the three that follow them in the general table qualify for the playoffs.

However, in the playoffs there is a peculiarity: the first of each Conference has the first round bye. This is how they face each other: the second against the seventh, the third against the sixth and the fourth against the fifth.

Also, the keys are not fixed. In the next round, the first of each Conference (who had the first round bye) faces the lowest ranked remaining in their zone. Then, the two Conference finals are played and the two winning franchises get their ticket to the Super Bowl.


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