Wednesday, December 16, 2009
First, as of right now I'm not considering the 6-7 teams for two reasons 1) I think at least 1 7-6 team gets to 10-6 2) Their conference records respectively are 4-6, 4-6, 3-7 which means they are toast in multi-way any tiebreaker. So now let's get to the meat, the 5 teams contending for the wildcard spot.
Denver Broncos, 8-5, 6-4: The Broncos remaining schedule plus 1 game head start give them a significant edge over the competition. The game in Philly will be very difficult but the other two games should be easy victories. If the Broncos win both games they will sit at 10-6 with a 6-4 conference record which sounds great, but it could come with issues. At 10-6 they would lose a tie breaker to both Jacksonville (conference record) and Baltimore (H2H). They would also be in a Strength of Victory sprint with the Dolphins where having the Chiefs and Raiders on your schedule isn't a good thing. H2H Wins: NE, CIN
Jacksonville Jaguars, 7-6, 6-3: Despite the loss to the Dolphins the Jaguars are still "in" the playoffs as of right now thanks to their 6-3 conference record and being in a multiple way tie. If the Jaguars win out they will get in in every circumstance except a single head to head tie with the Dolphins at 10-6. So if the Broncos lose and finish 10-6 or the Ravens win out and finish 10-6, than if the Jags win out they are in. Regardless all of this is a moot point if the Jags can't beat both the Colts and Patriots which I doubt highly they will do. H2H Wins: NYJ
Baltimore Ravens, 7-6, 6-4: The Ravens probably have the easiest schedule left of the 7-6 teams but they are lacking separation in H2H wins and conference record. The win over the Broncos could be very very helpful if the Broncos lose to the Eagles. If the Broncos run the table than things will get sticky for the Ravens. H2H Wins: DEN
Miami Dolphins, 7-6, 6-4: The Dolphins have wins over the Jets and Jags which gives them an advantage in those tie situations. If they finish in a tie with the Ravens it comes down the strength of victory which is always a toss up. H2H Wins: NYJ, JAX
New York Jets, 7-6, 5-5: The Jets need to win out and get lotsa help. If they finish in a tie with anyone the Jets are done, so its time to start rooting for the underdogs. If the Jets get by Atlanta this weekend than they could be helped out by both the Colts and Bengals resting players due to having nothing to play for.