Originally Posted by You
How about this crazy scenario...??
IF MIN, DAL AND AZ WIN NEXT WEEK IN THE NFC, AND JETS, OAK, MIA, HOU WIN IN THE AFC, THEN WEEK 18 WILDCARD ROUND WILL BE AN EXACT REPEAT OF THE OPPONENTS THAT PLAYED IN WEEK 17, WHICH WILL BE CIN VS NYJ HOU VS NE DAL VS PHI AZ VS GB
NFL - Playoff Scenario Generator- Yahoo! Sports
The whole playoff picture is pretty bizarre, with a stark contrast between the situations in the two conferences.
>> In the AFC, the four conference champions and the top two seeds are settled (the Colts have #1 seed, the Chargers have #2 seed, and the Patriots and the Bengals could swap the #3 and #4 seeds in the final week), but there are five teams with 8-7 records and two teams with 7-8 records that still have a shot at the wild card slots. In particular, note that the Jaguars, currently one of the 7-8 teams, will own the conference record tiebreaker over all other teams that end the season at 8-8 and thus will get the #5 seed with a win and losses by all five of the 8-7 teams -- two of whom are playing the #3 and #4 seeds.
>> In the NFC, the Saints have the #1 seed and the other five teams in the playoffs are known, but their seeds are far from settled. The Eagles and the Cowboys are competing for their conference championship. The Eagles get #2 seed with a win, but could get either #5 or #6 seed with a loss. The Cowboys get #2, #3, or #4 seed with a win, but will get #6 seed with a loss. The Vikings and the Cardinals are conference champions, are still competing with the Eagles and the Cowboys for the #2, #3, and #4 seeds. The other wild card team, the Packers, is competing against the loser of the Cowboys-Eagles game for the #5 and #6 seeds.
So we have one conference in which the teams are pretty settled but, with one exception, fighting for position and the other conference in which the top four positions are pretty much settled but there are seven teams still fighting for the last two slots.
The scenario of four rematches of Week 17 on games in the first round of playoffs clearly would be a pretty bizarre development, but I would not count on it in any case.
>> The Patriots and the Bengals now have equal Won-Loss records, equal conference records, and equal records against common opponents, and they did not play head to head, so the tiebreaker for the #3 and #4 seeds comes down to Strength of Victory (in which the Patriots have an edge of about four wins going into the final week of the regular season). For the Patriots, a win would essentially lock #3 seed, which means (1) playing the #6 seed rather than the #5 seed in the first round, (2) playing the Chargers rather than the Colts in the second round, and (3) home field advantage in the conference championship after the Bengals upset the Colts in the second round. (We are pretty certain that the Bengals will upset the Colts, aren't we???) Thus, I do expect the Patriots to "show up" with their "A" game against Houston on Sunday. The Bengals have a similar interest in winning their game agains the Jets on Sunday, though they also need a lotta help from either the Texans or all of the teams playing everybody who beat the Patriots to secure the #3 seed, so I expect that they also will "show up" with their "A" game against the Jets on Sunday.
>> And if you simply assume that the outcome of each game is a 50-50 proposition, the probability is one in 128 -- clearly not the way to bet.
In any case, the the outcome of the games that are still relevant should be very interesting indeed!