Building a four-team playoff

Debating what a playoff would look like right now; plus, rising NFL prospects

Updated: November 11, 2013, 2:52 PM ET
By Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay | ESPN Insider

AJ McCarron and Jameis WinstonUSA TODAY SportsAJ McCarron and Jameis Winston would face off if there were a four-team playoff today.

Each week during the college football season, Mel Kiper and Todd McShay kick off the week by settling a debate, and then look at emerging NFL prospects and peek ahead to next week.

The discussion: If the season ended today, and you had to set up a four-team playoff, who's in it?

Mel Kiper: I'll give you three teams you might expect, and one you might not.

No. 1 seed: Alabama is the first seed, but if the Crimson Tide played against Florida State on a neutral field tomorrow, I think it's pretty close to a pick 'em. This is a worthy No. 1 team in America, but not a dominant one, and I think LSU showed the defense is far from invincible. Where Bama is scary is how much it can physically impose its will, particularly late, as we saw against LSU, with that offensive line.

Mel Kiper Jr.

Football analyst