The NFL usually appeals to my OCD, but I need to change the divisions

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8 

Hi. My Name is Kate. I have OCD.

I joke about it, but it’s a reality I live with every day. Oh, by no means is it severe or life-altering for me, so I don’t mean to belittle the condition. But it is something I’m open about even if I’ve learned to live with being uncomfortable at times.

For example, I want almost all numbers to be even. If I pump gas and it ends on an odd number – or one I think is just weird – I’ll pump a bit more until it hits a number I like.  My family loves to put the TV volume on an odd number and wait to see how long I can leave it there before I grab the remote and pop it up or down one just to be even.

When I eat, I try to chew the same number of time on each side. When I walk, if I step on a yellow line in a parking lot with my right foot, I will do a little jig dance and try to hit the next one with my left foot before going back to dodging them altogether. (I think you’re getting the idea.)

If I can’t “even things up,” then so be it. But it will make me a bit uncomfortable for a while.

I think this, in part, explains my supreme love for the NFL and all the symmetrical, even things that is has going for it!






Just start by looking at the field…. all those nice, neat lines… the same number on the left half as on the right half… a perfect mirror image!

Then, there are all those lovely even numbers themselves: 100 yards, Four downs, Six points for a Touchdown, 2-point conversion… ok so I’m skipping a couple scoring options but they aren’t so bad.

And the number of teams? 32 may be my favorite number of all. It splits so nicely into many different EVEN pieces….. Two Conferences, Four Divisions, Four teams in each one… Sigh. It doesn’t get much better than that for me!

However, I must admit that geographically speaking, the way teams are divided up makes me CRAZY! I can’t even look at a map showing markers for each time without mentally reorganizing them into something that makes more sense to my brain.

With that in mind, I thought I’d share with you, my perfect geographical divisions. Yes, I know my attempt at artwork leaves much to be desired, but I tried….  oh and I also kept in mind that Oakland would be in Las Vegas soon so they are positioned accordingly!  (Teams with an * changed Conferences. Don’t scold me – their city is where it is!). I’d love to hear how much you love – or hate – my new divisions!

Ok, here it goes…

The way the divisions should be in Kate’s mind.

AFC EAST                                                         NFC EAST
New England Patriots                                 Baltimore Ravens*
New York Giants*                                       Carolina Panthers
New York Jets                                             Cincinnati Bengals*
Philadelphia Eagles*                                   Washington Redskins

AFC NORTH                                                 NFC NORTH
Buffalo Bills                                                    Chicago Bears
Cleveland Browns                                         Green Bay Packers
Detroit Lions*                                                Minnesota Vikings
Pittsburgh Steelers                                       Indianapolis Colts*

AFC SOUTH                                                      NFC SOUTH
Atlanta Falcons*                                             Dallas Cowboys
Jacksonville Jaguars                                      Houston Texans*
Miami Dolphins                                               New Orleans Saints
Tampa Bay Buccaneers*                               Tennessee Titans*

AFC WEST                                                        NFC WEST
Arizona Cardinals*                                         Kansas City Chiefs*
Los Angeles Rams*                                        Las Vegas (Oakland) Raiders*
Los Angeles Chargers                                    Denver Broncos*
San Francisco 49ers*                                     Seattle Seahawks

Yes, I realize you can’t have both New York teams in the same division or the two Los Angeles teams for that matter. But ignoring that little issue, I love these divisions.

So, do you love or hate where I put your team? Would it make the divisions fairer or is it just geographically pleasing? Let me know!

Talk football with Kate on Twitter // @ClvlndK8

#SmartWomen #SmartFootball

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