|Duration||September 4 – December 19, 1988|
|Start date||December 24, 1988|
|AFC Champions||Cincinnati Bengals|
|NFC Champions||San Francisco 49ers|
|Super Bowl XXIII|
|Date||January 22, 1989|
|Site||Joe Robbie Stadium, Miami|
|Champions||San Francisco 49ers|
|Date||January 29, 1989|
The 1988 NFL season was the 69th regular season of the National Football League. The Cardinals relocated from St. Louis, Missouri to the Phoenix, Arizona area becoming the Phoenix Cardinals but remained in the NFC East division. The playoff races came down to the regular season's final week, with the Seattle Seahawks winning the AFC West by one game, and the Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco 49ers winning their respective divisions in a five-way tie, with the New Orleans Saints and New York Giants losing the NFC Wild Card berth to the Los Angeles Rams on tiebreakers.
1988 marked the final seasons for legendary head coaches Tom Landry of Dallas and Bill Walsh of San Francisco as well as the final full year for commissioner Pete Rozelle.
The season ended with Super Bowl XXIII when the San Francisco 49ers defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 20–16 at the Joe Robbie Stadium in Florida.
The 1988 NFL Draft was held from April 24 to 25, 1988 at New York City’s Marriott Marquis. With the first pick, the Atlanta Falcons selected linebacker Aundray Bruce from the Auburn University.
Johnny Grier became the first African-American in NFL history to be promoted to referee.  Grier replaced long time referee Bob Frederic, who retired in the offseason. Grier was the field judge in the previous season's Super Bowl XXII, which was the same game that Doug Williams of the Washington Redskins became the first African-American quarterback to win the Super Bowl.
A series of National Football League pre-season exhibition games that were held at sites outside the United States, the only American Bowl game in 1988 was held at London's Wembley Stadium.
|Date||Winning Team||Score||Losing Team||Score||Stadium||City|
|July 31, 1988||Miami Dolphins||27||San Francisco 49ers||21||Wembley Stadium||London|
Highlights of the 1988 season included:
|Jan 1 – Rich Stadium|
|Dec 24 – Cleveland Stadium||Jan 8 – Riverfront Stadium|
|Dec 31 – Riverfront Stadium|
|Jan 22 – Joe Robbie Stadium|
|Wild Card playoffs||A1||Cincinnati||16|
|Jan 1 – Candlestick Park|
|Super Bowl XXIII|
|Dec 26 – Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome||Jan 8 – Soldier Field|
|5||LA Rams||17||2||San Francisco||28|
|Dec 31 – Soldier Field|
|Points scored||Cincinnati Bengals (448)|
|Total yards gained||Cincinnati Bengals (6,057)|
|Yards rushing||Cincinnati Bengals (2,710)|
|Yards passing||Miami Dolphins (4,516)|
|Fewest points allowed||Chicago Bears (215)|
|Fewest total yards allowed||Minnesota Vikings (4,091)|
|Fewest rushing yards allowed||Chicago Bears (1,326)|
|Fewest passing yards allowed||Kansas City Chiefs (2,434)|
|Most Valuable Player||Boomer Esiason, quarterback, Cincinnati|
|Coach of the Year||Mike Ditka, Chicago|
|Offensive Player of the Year||Roger Craig, running back, San Francisco|
|Defensive Player of the Year||Mike Singletary, linebacker, Chicago|
|Offensive Rookie of the Year||John Stephens, running back, New England|
|Defensive Rookie of the Year||Erik McMillan, safety, NY Jets|
|NFL Comeback Player of the Year||Greg Bell, running back, LA Rams|
|NFL Man of the Year||Steve Largent, wide receiver, Seattle|
|Super Bowl Most Valuable Player||Jerry Rice, wide receiver, San Francisco|
The relocated Phoenix Cardinals moved from Busch Memorial Stadium in St. Louis to Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona
This was the second year under the league's three-year broadcast contracts with ABC, CBS, NBC, and ESPN to televise Monday Night Football , the NFC package, the AFC package, and Sunday Night Football , respectively. Joe Theismann took over as lead color commentator in ESPN's booth, replacing Roy Firestone, while the weekly "guest color commentator" spot was discontinued. Meanwhile, Dick Butkus joined The NFL Today as analyst, alongside host Brent Musburger and Irv Cross. 
A number of NBC's regular NFL commentators were temporarily replaced while they called the network's coverage of the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea from September 17 to October 2. Among them, Len Berman returned to the NFL on NBC pregame show to fill-in for host Bob Costas, while Curt Gowdy, Ray Scott, Chuck Thompson, Marty Glickman, Merle Harmon, and Al DeRogatis filled-in on the network's various broadcast crews.
The National Football Conference - Western Division or NFC West is one of the four divisions of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). It currently has four members: the Arizona Cardinals, the Los Angeles Rams, the San Francisco 49ers, and the Seattle Seahawks.
The 2004 NFL season was the 85th regular season of the National Football League.
The 2005 NFL season was the 86th regular season of the National Football League.
The 2002 NFL season was the 83rd regular season of the National Football League.
The 2003 NFL season was the 84th regular season of the National Football League (NFL).
The 1997 NFL season was the 78th regular season of the National Football League. The Oilers relocated from Houston, Texas to Nashville, Tennessee. The newly renamed Tennessee Oilers played their home games during this season at the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee while construction of a new stadium in Nashville started. Houston would rejoin the NFL with the expansion Texans in 2002.
The 1996 NFL season was the 77th regular season of the National Football League and the season was marked by notable controversies from beginning to end. Most significantly, the Cleveland Browns relocation controversy resulted in a then-unique legal settlement where the Cleveland Browns franchise, history, records, and intellectual property remained in Cleveland, while its players and personnel transferred to Baltimore, technically to a new league franchise that was named the Baltimore Ravens.
The 1995 NFL season was the 76th regular season of the National Football League. The league expanded to 30 teams with the addition of the Carolina Panthers and the Jacksonville Jaguars. The two expansion teams were slotted into the two remaining divisions that previously had only four teams : the AFC Central (Jaguars) and the NFC West (Panthers).
The 1990 NFL season was the 71st regular season of the National Football League. To increase revenue, the league, for the first time since 1966, reinstated bye weeks, so that all NFL teams would play their 16-game schedule over a 17-week period. Furthermore, the playoff format was expanded from 10 teams to 12 teams by adding another wild card from each conference, thus adding two more contests to the postseason schedule; this format was modified with realignment in 2002 before the playoffs expanded to 14 teams in 2020. During four out of the five previous seasons under the 10-team format, at least one team with a 10–6 record missed the playoffs, including the 11–5 Denver Broncos in 1985; meanwhile, the 10–6 San Francisco 49ers won Super Bowl XXIII, leading for calls to expand the playoff format to ensure that 10–6 teams could compete for a Super Bowl win. Ironically, the first sixth-seeded playoff team would not have a 10–6 record, but instead, the New Orleans Saints, with an 8–8 record, took the new playoff spot.
The 1989 NFL season was the 70th regular season of the National Football League. Before the season, NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle announced his retirement. Paul Tagliabue was eventually chosen to succeed him, taking over on November 5.
The 1985 NFL season was the 66th regular season of the National Football League. The season ended with Super Bowl XX when the Chicago Bears defeated the New England Patriots 46–10 at the Louisiana Superdome. The Bears became the second team in NFL history to win 15 games in the regular season and 18 including the playoffs.
The 1983 NFL season was the 64th regular season of the National Football League. The Colts played their final season in Baltimore before the team's relocation to Indianapolis the following season. The season ended with Super Bowl XVIII when the Los Angeles Raiders defeated the Washington Redskins 38–9 at Tampa Stadium in Florida.
The 1981 NFL season was the 62nd regular season of the National Football League. The season ended with Super Bowl XVI when the San Francisco 49ers defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 26–21 at the Pontiac Silverdome in Michigan.
The 1980 NFL season was the 61st regular season of the National Football League.
The 1979 NFL season was the 60th regular season of the National Football League. The season ended with Super Bowl XIV when the Pittsburgh Steelers repeated as champions by defeating the Los Angeles Rams 31–19 at the Rose Bowl. The Steelers became the first team to win back-to-back Super Bowls twice.
The 1978 NFL season was the 59th regular season of the National Football League. The league expanded the regular season from a 14-game schedule to 16 games, which it remained in place until 2021 when it was increased to 17 games. Furthermore, the playoff format was expanded from 8 teams to 10 teams by adding another wild card from each conference. The wild card teams played each other, with the winner advancing to the playoff round of eight teams.
The 1977 NFL season was the 58th regular season of the National Football League. The two second-year expansion teams switched conferences, with the Seattle Seahawks moving from the NFC West to the AFC West, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers transferring from the AFC West to the NFC Central.
The 1975 NFL season was the 56th regular season of the National Football League.
The 1973 NFL season was the 54th regular season of the National Football League. The season was highlighted by O. J. Simpson becoming the first player to rush for 2,000 yards in one season.
The 1971 NFL season was the 52nd regular season of the National Football League. The Boston Patriots changed their name to New England Patriots to widen their appeal to the entire New England region after moving to their new stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts, located between Boston and Providence, Rhode Island.