Twentyman: Is the NFC North the toughest division in football?

Posted Jul 12, 2013

All four NFC North teams have made the playoffs since 2010 with the last two NFL MVPs coming from the division

Three of the four teams in the NFC North won at least 10 games in 2012. All four teams – Detroit, Green Bay, Chicago and Minnesota – have made the playoffs since 2010. Heck, the last two MVPs have come from the division.

So, it begs the question: is the NFC North and its 35-29 record in 2012 the toughest division in football?

I put the NFC North in the top three, along with the NFC West and the AFC North (Note: Lions play all four AFC North teams in 2013).

The interesting part about the NFC West is that the 49ers and Seahawks didn't even have the best record in that division last year. That honor went to the Rams (4-1-1).

The 49ers and Seahawks are legitimate Super Bowl contenders and the Rams are an up-and-coming team that's added some weapons. The Cardinals are improved (just ask the Lions). The four teams in the NFC West went a collective 34-28-2 in 2012.

The AFC North boasts the defending Super Bowl champion Ravens, but is also the only division in football that's sent multiple teams into the playoffs in each of the past five seasons and have won multiple Super Bowl titles.

I tend to put the NFC West and NFC North a touch above the AFC North at this point because the Steelers aren't what they used to be and the Browns are still trying to climb their way into respectability.

The North and the West are the two top divisions in my book with the West maybe having a slight edge because of the teams at the top.

It's a great argument and there's a case for a lot of different divisions, including the NFC South and maybe even the NFC East.

Where do you think the NFL North fits in among the eight divisions in football?