Sincere thanks to both of you for taking my question seriously and giving thoughtful and helpful answers.
It happens that my D80 always focused "well", in that I did not experience either the front or rear focus issues I have read about a good deal reference the D7000. I could track Osprey and Eagles in flight with the "wide" single center focus point. Woodpeckers & flickers were more difficult. Landscapes of course, not an issue, as were whales in the ocean.
I wish I could get this site to allow me to post my D600 "real world test shots", where I went out in various lighting situations and played with the focus points, the ISO, and aperture settings similar to my film days. I saw "rear focus" in flowers, where the camera picked a petal or stem "behind" the bloom I had "put" the focus point.
From your posts I now wonder if many of those complaining of rear (and front) focus were experiencing instead the focus points being "wider" than the target, as you have explained.
BTW: I am VERY pleased so far with my D600 in FX mode, and also with DX shooting the 16-85mm 3.5/4.5 VR. The MP is even a bit better than D80 as is dynamic range and low light capabilities, in both DX and FX.