1983 NFL season

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1983 National Football League season
Regular season
Duration September 3 – December 19, 1983
Playoffs
Start date December 24, 1983
AFC Champions Los Angeles Raiders
NFC Champions Washington Redskins
Super Bowl XVIII
Date January 22, 1984
Site Tampa Stadium, Tampa, Florida
Champions Los Angeles Raiders
Pro Bowl
Date January 28, 1984
Site Aloha Stadium
National Football League seasons
 < 1982 1984 > 

The 1983 NFL season was the 64th regular season of the National Football League. The season ended with Super Bowl XVIII when the Los Angeles Raiders defeated the Washington Redskins.

Major rule changes[edit]

  • In the last 30 seconds of a half, with the defensive team behind with no more time outs, a defensive foul cannot prevent the half to end except for the normal options that are available to the offensive team.
  • Pass interference will not be called if there was incidental contact, or if when players make simultaneous attempts to catch, tip, block, or bat the ball.
  • A player may not use a helmet, that is no longer worn by anyone, as a weapon to strike or hit an opponent.

Division Races[edit]

Starting in 1978, ten teams qualified for the playoffs: the winners of each of the divisions, and two wild-card teams in each conference. The two wild cards would meet for the right to face whichever of the three division winners had the best overall record. The tiebreaker rules were based on head-to-head competition, followed by division records, common opponents records, and conference play.

National Football Conference[edit]

Week Eastern Central Western WildCard WildCard
1 Cowboys, Eagles 1–0 3 teams 1–0 3 teams 1–0
2 Cowboys 2–0 4 teams 1–1 Rams 2–0
3 Cowboys 3–0 Vikings, Packers 2–1 4 teams 2–1
4 Cowboys 4–0 Vikings 3–1 49ers 3–1 Redskins 3–1 6 teams 2–2
5 Cowboys 5–0 Vikings, Packers 3–2 49ers 4–1 Redskins 4–1 5 teams 3–2
6 Cowboys 6–0 Vikings 4–2 3 teams 4–2 Redskins 5–1 4 teams 4–2
7 Cowboys 7–0 Vikings 5–2 49ers, Rams 5–2 3 teams 5–2 3 teams 4–3
8 Cowboys 7–1 Vikings 6–2 49ers 6–2 Redskins 6–2 Saints, Rams 5–3
9 Cowboys 8–1 Vikings 6–3 49ers 6–3 Redskins 7–2 Saints, Rams 5–4
10 Cowboys 9–1 Vikings 6–4 3 teams 6–4 Redskins 8–2 3 teams 6–4
11 Cowboys, Redskins 9–2 Vikings, Packers 6–5 49ers, Rams 7–4 Cowboys, Redskins 9–2 49ers, Rams 7–4
12 Cowboys, Redskins 10–2 Vikings 7–5 49ers, Rams 7–5 Cowboys, Redskins 10–2 49ers, Rams 7–5
13 Cowboys, Redskins 11–2 Vikings, Lions 7–6 Rams 8–5 Cowboys, Redskins 11–2 Lions, Vikings 7–6
14 Cowboys, Redskins 12–2 Lions 8–6 49ers, Rams 8–6 Cowboys, Redskins 12–2 49ers, Rams 8–6
15 Redskins 13–2 Lions, Packers 8–7 49ers 9–6 Cowboys 12–3 4 teams 8–7
16 WASHINGTON 14–2 DETROIT 9–7 SAN FRANCISCO 10–6 DALLAS 12–4 LOS ANGELES 9–7

American Football Conference[edit]

Week Eastern Central Western WildCard WildCard
1 3 teams 1–0 4 teams 0–1 3 teams 1–0
2 Dolphins 2–0 Steelers, Browns 1–1 Raiders, Broncos 2–0
3 Dolphins, Bills 2–1 Steelers, Browns 2–1 Raiders 3–0 6 teams 2–1
4 Dolphins, Bills 3–1 Browns 3–1 Raiders 4–0 3 teams 3–1 6 teams 2–2
5 4 teams 3–2 Steelers, Browns 3–2 Raiders 4–1 7 teams 3–2 4 teams 2–3
6 Bills, Colts 4–2 Steelers, Browns 4–2 Raiders 5–1 4 teams 4–2 5 teams 3–3
7 Bills 5–2 Steelers 5–2 Raiders 5–2 Dolphins, Colts 4–3 Browns, Seahawks 4–3
8 Dolphins, Bills 5–3 Steelers 6–2 Raiders 6–2 Dolphins, Bills 5–3 Broncos 5–3
9 Dolphins, Bills 6–3 Steelers 7–2 Raiders, Broncos 6–3 Dolphins, Bills 6–3 Raiders, Broncos 6–3
10 Dolphins 7–3 Steelers 8–2 Raiders 7–3 Bills, Colts 6–4 Seahawks, Broncos 6–4
11 Dolphins, Bills 7–4 Steelers 9–2 Raiders 8–3 Dolphins, Bills 7–4 5 teams 6–5
12 Dolphins 8–4 Steelers 9–3 Raiders 9–3 3 teams 7–5 3 teams 6–5
13 Dolphins 9–4 Steelers 9–4 Raiders 10–3 Browns 8–5 3 teams 7–6
14 Dolphins 10–4 Steelers 9–5 Raiders 11–3 3 teams 8–6 4 teams 7–7
15 Dolphins 11–4 Steelers 10–5 Raiders 11–4 Broncos 9–6 4 teams 8–7
16 MIAMI 12–4 PITTSBURGH 10–6 LOS ANGELES 12–4 SEATTLE 9–7 DENVER 9–7

Final standings[edit]

W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, PCT = Winning Percentage, PF= Points For, PA = Points Against

  x  – clinched wild card berth,   y  – clinched division title

AFC East
Team W L T PCT PF PA
y-Miami Dolphins 12 4 0 .750 389 250
New England Patriots 8 8 0 .500 274 289
Buffalo Bills 8 8 0 .500 283 351
Baltimore Colts 7 9 0 .438 264 354
New York Jets 7 9 0 .438 313 331
AFC Central
Team W L T PCT PF PA
y-Pittsburgh Steelers 10 6 0 .625 355 303
Cleveland Browns 9 7 0 .563 356 342
Cincinnati Bengals 7 9 0 .438 346 302
Houston Oilers 2 14 0 .125 288 460
AFC West
Team W L T PCT PF PA
y-Los Angeles Raiders 12 4 0 .750 442 338
x-Seattle Seahawks 9 7 0 .563 403 397
x-Denver Broncos 9 7 0 .563 302 327
San Diego Chargers 6 10 0 .375 358 462
Kansas City Chiefs 6 10 0 .375 386 367
NFC East
Team W L T PCT PF PA
y-Washington Redskins 14 2 0 .875 541 332
x-Dallas Cowboys 12 4 0 .750 479 360
St. Louis Cardinals 8 7 1 .531 374 428
Philadelphia Eagles 5 11 0 .313 233 322
New York Giants 3 12 1 .219 267 347
NFC Central
Team W L T PCT PF PA
y-Detroit Lions 9 7 0 .563 347 286
Green Bay Packers 8 8 0 .500 429 439
Chicago Bears 8 8 0 .500 311 301
Minnesota Vikings 8 8 0 .500 316 348
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2 14 0 .125 241 380
NFC West
Team W L T PCT PF PA
y-San Francisco 49ers 10 6 0 .625 432 293
x-Los Angeles Rams 9 7 0 .563 361 344
New Orleans Saints 8 8 0 .500 319 337
Atlanta Falcons 7 9 0 .438 370 389


Tiebreakers[edit]

  • Los Angeles Raiders was the first AFC seed over Miami based on head-to-head sweep (1–0).
  • Seattle was the first AFC Wild Card ahead of Denver based on better division record (5–3 to Broncos' 3–5) after Cleveland was eliminated from the three-way tie based on head-to-head record (Seattle and Denver 2–1 to Browns' 0–2).
  • New England finished ahead of Buffalo in the AFC East based on head-to-head sweep (2–0).
  • Baltimore finished ahead of N.Y. Jets in the AFC East based on better conference record (5–9, .357 to Jets' 4–8, .333).
  • San Diego finished ahead of Kansas City in the AFC West based on head-to-head sweep (2–0).
  • Minnesota ended up in fourth place in the NFC Central after being eliminated from the three-way tie based on conference record (Chicago 7–7 and Green Bay 6–6 to Vikings' 4–8).
  • Green Bay finished ahead of Chicago in the NFC Central based on better record against common opponents (5–5 to Bears' 4–6).

Playoffs[edit]

*Note: Two teams from the same division were not allowed to play against each other in the Divisional playoff round.
                                   
Divisional Playoffs
    December 31 - Candlestick Park        
NFC Wild Card Game NFC Championship
 3  Detroit  23
December 26 - Texas Stadium     January 8 - RFK Stadium
 2  San Francisco  24  
 5  L.A. Rams  24  2  San Francisco  21
January 1 - RFK Stadium
 4  Dallas  17      1  Washington  24   Super Bowl XVIII
 5  L.A. Rams  7
    January 22 - Tampa Stadium
 1  Washington  51  
 N1  Washington  9
December 31 - Miami Orange Bowl
AFC Wild Card Game AFC Championship    A1  L.A. Raiders  38
 4  Seattle  27
December 24 - Kingdome     January 8 - L.A. Memorial Coliseum
 2*  Miami  20  
 5  Denver  7  4  Seattle  14
January 1 - L.A. Memorial Coliseum
 4  Seattle  31      1  L.A. Raiders  30  
 3  Pittsburgh  10
   
 1*  L.A. Raiders  38  

Awards[edit]

Most Valuable Player Joe Theismann, Quarterback, Washington
Coach of the Year Joe Gibbs, Washington
Offensive Player of the Year Joe Theismann, Quarterback, Washington
Defensive Player of the Year Doug Betters, Defensive End, Miami
Offensive Rookie of the Year Eric Dickerson, Running Back, L.A. Rams
Defensive Rookie of the Year Vernon Maxwell, Linebacker, Baltimore Colts

References[edit]