Blog Entry

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

Posted on: December 13, 2011 1:20 am
 

Week 14 brought us some separation as the top teams in the AFC (NE, BAL, HOU, PIT) all won and the Jets grabbed a Wild Card spot for now with a badly needed win since all 5 of NYJ's losses are conference losses.  And then there's DEN-BOW.  Seriously?  This story just keeps on getting more and more incredible each week!

On the NFC side, NYG pulled out a huge late win at DAL and secured the lead in the NFC East (DAL could have clinched division title in wk 15 if they had won).  GB and NO continued their positive push forward with NO gaining a playoff berth and GB getting a first round bye, but the field goal happy 49ers stumbled against ARI.  DET and ATL kept up their Wild Card positions, but the Tebow-ed CHI squad is now on the outside looking in.

Playoff clinching scenarios for Week 15 are below.  Looked at DET and ATL potential clinching scenarios, but since both teams are playing AFC opponents they could still end up with 6-6 conference records (not typical for playoff teams) and DET can still be caught by CHI and lost to ATL H2H and ATL lost to CHI H2H...both teams have to wait at least another week for playoff qualification.

Also...since the only scenario keeping PIT from having already clinched a playoff berth is a PIT-TEN-DEN Wild Card tie at 10-6 that goes to Strength of Victory, we looked at whether any combination of game results during Wk 15 could clinch that SOV for PIT and there is none.  So PIT must rely on the scenarios below.

Joe

AFC PLAYOFF PICTURE

Clinched: HOUSTON (AFC South Champ)
Eliminated: IND (Wk 12), JAC (Wk 13), BUF (Wk 14), CLE (Wk 14), MIA (Wk 14)  

NEW ENGLAND clinches division title with:
1) WIN
2) TIE + NYJ loss/tie
3) NYJ loss

NEW ENGLAND clinches playoff berth with:
1) TIE
2) CIN loss/tie + TEN loss/tie + OAK loss/tie

BALTIMORE clinches playoff berth with:
1) WIN or TIE
2) NYJ loss + TEN loss/tie
3) NYJ loss + OAK loss/tie
4) TEN loss/tie + OAK loss/tie

PITTSBURGH clinches playoff berth with:
1) WIN or TIE
2) NYJ loss
3) TEN loss/tie
4) OAK loss/tie
5) DEN loss

NFC PLAYOFF PICTURE

Clinched: GREEN BAY (NFC North Champ + 1st Round Playoff Bye), SAN FRANCISCO (NFC West Champ), NEW ORLEANS (Playoff)
Eliminated: MIN (Wk 12), STL (Wk 12), CAR (Wk 14), TB (Wk 14), WAS (Wk 14) 

GREEN BAY clinches home-field advantage with:
1) WIN or TIE
2) SF loss/tie

NEW ORLEANS clinches division title with:
1) WIN + ATL loss/tie
2) TIE + ATL loss

Comments

Since: Dec 27, 2006
Posted on: December 16, 2011 5:05 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

To the one that mentioned teams being promoted, I believe that the tiebreaker procedures actually use the process of elimination to determine the actual winner.
This is a good point that we've discussed before, particularly when dealing with the Draft Order.

The Tie-breakers do indeed work on sucsessively 'eliminating' teams -- especially in the wild-card TB -- from the bottom of the pile (1 or 2 or even 3 at a time), until the top one is left, and then repeats this process for each lower position.

Brett has mentionned on more than one occasion, that using the division and/or wild card TBs to determine draft order (which is done when 2 or more teams from the same conference have the same SOS) does not necessarily result in the worst team in a tied group getting the best pick. What it does it guarantee the the best team in a tied group gets the worst pick -- which is not the same thing.




Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: December 16, 2011 4:28 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

Brett....the question was phrased right...you just don't like the answer.  ;-)

The League and Elias are looking for a Sweep there for it to be a definitive tiebreaking occurrence due to the minimal games played among the 3 or more for a Wild Card (as opposed to multi-team divisional ties with more H2H games).  You can disagree with it...but that's their position at this time.



Since: Nov 21, 2011
Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:54 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

Noob: Those dang officials, they always blow the call! Good thing you kept that red flag in your sock. "after review, the situation only had one tie in bounds of the subset, therefore it is an incomplete pass, 2nd down." Gw: I think that's a great way to look at it. Once each team is eliminated from the tiebreak, it restarts. This way theres no confusion between promotion and elimination and their respective order.



Since: Dec 12, 2006
Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:48 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

IMO, this is the most important concept:  "1. Only one club advances to the playoffs in any tie-breaking step. Remaining tied clubs revert to the first step of the applicable division or Wild-Card tie breakers. "  So maybe the "Other Tiebreaking Procedures" section should be moved before the divisional / wild card procedures.


I also think that this should be at or near the top as it is key to understanding how the process works.  What happens many times is that the media, teams and fans who are not familiar with the process would only look at the part of the tiebreaking rules that affects their team and not look at the full tiebreaking procedures including the "Other Tie-Breaking Procedures" which is all the way at the bottom.  In 2004, we had STL, NO, and MIN tied at 8-8 for the two Wildcard spots.  STL won the first Wildcard based on better conference record (7-5) to NO (6-6) to MIN (5-7).  Someone not familiar with the tiebreakers would think that NO should get the second Wildcard since they clearly have a better conference record than MIN.  However, once STL won the tiebreaker and advanced to win the #5 seed, based on the rule "Only one club advances to the playoffs in any tie-breaking step...When one club wins the tie-breaker, all other teams revert to Step 1 of the applicable two-club...format," MIN then won the last WC spot based on H2H win over NO. 



Since: Dec 26, 2009
Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:34 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

Noob: well, I lose th SoA tiebreaker 2.4 million-40. I forgot that two ties would be necessary for that. Good thoughts.

Ok, I'm no fan of running up the score. There was an official review. We need two ties in the same season, so far so good. But only one of those two has to be in the three game H2H subset. That's 1 in every 43 seasons with two ties. So the score is only about 1,075 to 40.



Since: Dec 3, 2007
Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:24 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

I'll add a little something to this interesting discussion about the tiebreaking procedures.  In the multi-team tiebreaker scenarios, one of you mentioned teams being promoted instead of teams being eliminated.  If you look at the wording, when a 3rd team is eliminated, it reverts back to step 1 of the 2-team tiebreaker.  To the one that mentioned teams being promoted, I believe that the tiebreaker procedures actually use the process of elimination to determine the actual winner.  That's my POV.

 



Since: Nov 21, 2011
Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:11 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

Noob: well, I lose th SoA tiebreaker 2.4 million-40. I forgot that two ties would be necessary for that. Good thoughts.



Since: Dec 26, 2009
Posted on: December 16, 2011 2:57 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

Of course, it's better to have 12 conference games.

Team A: 8-8 overall, 2-1 H2H, 5-7 conference
Team B: 8-8 overall, 2-1 H2H, 5-7 conference
Team C: 8-8 overall, 1-2 H2H, 7-5 conference
Team D: 8-8 overall, 1-2 H2H, 7-5 conference





Since: Dec 26, 2009
Posted on: December 16, 2011 2:55 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

I'm presuming you mean that two teams with 1-2 H2H record should be restricted ultimately to 3rd and 4th seed in this scenario? perhaps that is how it should be, but would you agree that it isn't guaranteed in the current procedure?

How?

Imagine a tiebreaker for #6 seed

Team A: 8-8 overall, 2-1 H2H, 3-5 conference
Team B: 8-8 overall, 2-1 H2H, 3-5 conference
Team C: 8-8 overall, 1-2 H2H, 5-3 conference
Team D: 8-8 overall, 1-2 H2H, 5-3 conference

Whoever won or lost against whom in H2H, under the current rules, a 1-2 team will make it to the playoffs.




Since: Dec 29, 2009
Posted on: December 16, 2011 2:46 pm
 

WEEK 15 PLAYOFF SCENARIOS

This has turned into a very interesting conversation.  Clearly, the NFL tiebreaker language could be improved upon.  But I doubt the NFL deems revising it to be a high priority.

IMO, this is the most important concept:  "1. Only one club advances to the playoffs in any tie-breaking step. Remaining tied clubs revert to the first step of the applicable division or Wild-Card tie breakers. "  So maybe the "Other Tiebreaking Procedures" section should be moved before the divisional / wild card procedures.

I think the language could be made more clear by eliminating the word ... "eliminated".  Rather, the process is all about promotion.  For a pool of teams, you determine which procedure to apply (div/wc, 2-team/multi team).  Apply the step.  If all teams are tied, go to the next step.  If there is separation, promote only the team(s) with the best qualification, thereby decreasing the size of the pool.  When the pool size changes, you revert with only those teams.  The pool never gets larger, only smaller.  The end goal is to get down to one team.  That team gets the playoff position in question.  Then restart procedure for next playoff position.

What we think of as elimination is simply the case when all but 1 team is promoted.  A possible source of confusion is when a team is "h2h swept".  So, it might be worthwhile to break h2h sweep into two steps.  a) Performed a h2h sweep - defeating all other teams in tiebreak.  b) Not lost to all other teams in tiebreak.




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