Packers' Mark Murphy: Length of preseason 'an issue'

Packers president Mark Murphy isn't the first high-ranking league figure to cite the NFL preseason for its various faults, but he is the latest.

Murphy on Monday revealed that discussions have taken place about shortening the preseason from its current four-game slate, although he doesn't expect that to happen anytime soon.

"I think with all the concern about player health and safety, it would be difficult to go from 16 regular-season games to 18," Murphy said, per's Rob Demovsky. "One of the things that has kind of been looked at is, do we reduce the number of games overall (to) three preseason games and 16 regular-season games? But obviously there's a loss of revenue that comes with that."

Years ago, the preseason served as a needed forum to whip flabby, beer-guzzling athletes into football shape, but "the way the players train in the offseason, the preseason games are just significantly different," Murphy noted.

"The fourth (preseason) game, very few starters across the league play. They're all on Thursday," Murphy said. "So there are some that look and say, 'Why do we play that game?' The flip side is it's a chance to look at and make some roster decisions on younger players (and) develop some players. But it is an issue within the league."

Even at, it's hard to find meaningful stories from the final week of the preseason. Very little is at stake for fans, while coaches largely know their rosters by late August. That fourth tilt certainly matters for young players angling to piece together positive game film, but the final act of the preseason remains an inferior product -- and tough to market.

Just as we saw the Pro Bowl go through a remake, the NFL preseason is bound for tweaks. Just not in time for 2015.

*The latest Around The NFL Podcast discusses the eight most intriguing training camp battles heading into the season. *

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