Friday, December 05, 2008
Did You Know the Dolphins actually control their own destiny? The Dolphins currently sit 1 game behind the Jets and behind the Patriots thanks to their current 2-2 division record. And yet, with 4 games left it is the Dolphins and not the Patriots that control their destiny. Let's explain why.
First and foremost the Dolphins play the Jets which the Pats do not therefore the math is simple. If the Pats win out then there still is the chance that the Jets also win out and they finish in 2nd. The Dolphins however if they win out will clinch at minimum a tie for the division crown with either the Jets, Pats or both.
So let's say the Dolphins finish in a tie with either or both, why would they take the division crown. Well let's look at the tiebreakers.
In a 3 way tie here are the tiebreakers:
1. Head-to-head (Each team would be 2-2 against each other)
2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the division (Each team would be 4-2 in the division)
3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games (Common games outside the division are the NFC West and AFC West in which the Jets would be 6-3 and the Dolphins and Pats would be 7-1) Jets Eliminated
Then it breaks into a 2-way tie between the Pats and Dolphins, here are the tiebreakers:
1. Head-to-head (1-1)
2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the division (Both 4-2)
3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games (Both 7-1)
4. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference (Dolphins would be 8-4 and Pats would be 7-5) Pats Eliminated
What does this truly mean, why do the Dolphins have such an advantage in tiebreakers? It's simple they lost out of conference to the Cardinals and the Jets and Pats would have swept the NFC West. Additionally the Jets won both of their non-common games (Bengals & Titans) whereas the Pats (Pitt & Indy) and Dolphins (Ravens & Texans) lost both of their non-common games.
From 1-15 to controlling their destiny with 4 games left, life is always a lot better under Parcells.