Wednesday, December 23, 2009
This will give you a brief idea of whom holds the tie-breakers in the event of any 9-7 ties. First let's go over a quick rundown of the order of tie-breakers. Step 1, if it's a 3+-way tie, the first thing you do is make sure there are only 1 team from each division. So... The Ravens would edge the Steelers, Dolphins edge the Jets, Jacksonville edge the Titans who actually edge the Texans (division record).
Now if three or more teams still remain the tie breaker would be conference record. The Jags hold the edge here as they would finish 8-4 if they go 9-7. The Ravens, Jets, Dolphins, and likely Broncos (if loss vs. Eagles not Chiefs) would all finish 7-5. In this case the edge goes to the Broncos thanks to the Strength of Victory category. The Jets would likely have the edge over the Ravens via Strength of victory but again that only matters if the Dolphins aren't around.
Another thing to remember is that if there is a three way tie for two spots the tie-breaker for the first spot is via 3+ way tiebreakers aka what we discussed above. But then the next is a 1 on 1 tie breaker. So for instance in a Ravens, Broncos, Steelers tie-breaker the Ravens and Steelers would get in. Why? First step in a three way tie is to eliminate multiple division teams. The Steelers would be eliminated and the Ravens and Broncos would go 1 on 1. The Ravens get in thanks to their H2H win. Then it would come down to Broncos vs. Steelers and the Steelers would get in thanks again to a H2H win.
Now as soon as you throw in one additional team, the Titans, Jaguars, Texans, etc. the Steelers are essentially out. Why? If the tie was Titans, Broncos, Steelers and Ravens the Steelers would again be eliminated from the three way comparison. It would then come down to Titans, Broncos and Ravens in which case the Ravens would again get in. Why? The Titans would be eliminated via the conference record tie-breaker. Then it would be Ravens 1 on 1 and Ravens get in thanks to H2H. The tie-breaker would then go to Steelers vs. Titans vs. Broncos and the Broncos would get in thanks to a superior conference record. The H2H win for the Steelers would not matter in a 3 plus tie-breaker.
With the above simple chart you should be able to figure out every possible multi-way tie-breaker.