In the NFL, there are two conferences: the NFC and AFC. But what do these letters stand for? And what is the difference between them?
In this blog post, we will discuss the history of both leagues and explain what sets them apart. We will also take a look at which teams are considered to be the favorites to win each division within the two conferences, and look ahead to Super Bowl LVII in February 2023.
What are the NFC and AFC Conferences in the NFL?
The NFC, or National Football Conference, was formed in 1970 when the NFL merged with the American Football League. The AFC, or American Football Conference, was created at the same time. Prior to the merger, the two leagues were rivals and played against each other in the Super Bowl. After the merger, the NFL became one league with two conferences.
So, what sets these conferences apart?
For starters, they are made up of different teams. The NFC is made up of teams from the former National Football League while the AFC is made up of teams from the former American Football League. In addition, conference championships and playoff berth seeding is based on divisional standings within each conference. As a result, we have four divisions within each conference which are known as North, East, South, and West.
Is one conference better than the other?
It has long been argued by a number of NFL fans and observers that one conference is better than the other.
Some say the NFC is stronger because they have won more Super Bowls than the AFC. Others argue that the AFC is tougher because they have to play against each other in order to make it to the big game.
Naturally, a lot of this will be down to opinion, although with the data that has been made available, it is perhaps possible to side with the argument that the NFC is stronger.
Who are the early favorites to win each division within the AFC and NFC?
While there is still some way to go before the beginning of the NFL 2022 season, there have still been a number of predictions about who will be the winner of each division in the two conferences that exist.
According to the early online NFL betting odds to have been provided already, we have the following to have been listed as favorites so far:
- AFC East – Buffalo Bills (-200)
- AFC North – Baltimore Ravens (+175)
- AFC South – Indianapolis Colts (-110)
- AFC West – Kansas City Chiefs (+160)
- NFC South – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-286)
- NFC East – Dallas Cowboys (+130)
- NFC West – Los Angeles Rams (+125)
- NFC North – Green Bay Packers (-177)
As can be seen, there is hardly any real surprise given the odds that have been provided, however some NFL fans would suggest that there may be some value in some of the favorites to have been listed. For instance, the Chiefs and the Rams could be good bets, given their status as bets on the plus side.
What are the biggest rivalries within each conference?
Given the two different conferences within the NFL, there are a number of rivalries to have been created over the years that can be considered to be among the biggest that American football has ever experienced.
Indeed, the NFC East can be considered to be one division that is full of rivalries, with each of the four teams involved – Dallas Cowboys, New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles, and Washington Commanders – each having had a number of historic clashes against each other throughout the division’s history.
The AFC Conference is not without its historic rivalries, either, though, with the clash between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens perhaps one of the biggest rivalries in the entire sport!
After reading this article, you should have a greater understanding of what the AFC and NFC conferences are within the NFL now, and the history behind how they were formed. Indeed, the games between teams within the same conference are always rather enjoyable, but those that take place between two teams in the same division can be argued to be the best!