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A Level Playing Field

This season the National Football League has shown us that "parity" isn't a dirty word.

11:00 PM, Dec 30, 2002 • By MAX BOOT
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This set the stage for the third crucial game of the weekend--New York Jets vs. Green Bay Packers. The Jets had been given up for dead as recently as two weeks ago, after a sloppy loss to the dismal Chicago Bears. If they lost to the Packers, the Jets would be out of the playoffs; but if they won, they could win the division. And win they did, romping over the Packers as if they were playing a pee-wee team. The Dolphins and Patriots were not only robbed of a division title at the last second, but also of a playoff berth.

My sympathies go out to the fans in Miami and Boston. But even they would have to admit this was as exciting a weekend as any couch potato could have hoped for. And there's more ahead. The playoffs start Saturday and since neither of last year's Super Bowl teams (the Patriots and Rams) is in contention, there is no early favorite. The Giants and Jets, last-minute entrants both, have as good a chance as anyone of going all the way. No matter who emerges victorious, parity has been a winner.

Max Boot is Olin senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a contributing editor to The Weekly Standard.