Tag:Playoff Race
Posted on: December 1, 2010 2:29 pm
 

Week 13 Elimination Scenarios

Since we don't have any clinching scenarios for week 13 (first time this has occurred in the League since the 2000 season), I will detail the ELIMINATION SCENARIOS that could come into play this week.

CLEV can be eliminated this week with a loss at MIA and a BAL-PIT tie game.  The BAL-PIT tie advances both BAL and PIT ahead of the best CLEV can get to in this scenario (8-8) and would create 6 teams better CLEV (4 division winners plus 2 wild cards better than 8-8).

CLEV out with:
- LOSS + BAL-PIT tie
DEN is eliminated with a loss at KC.  Pretty simple...DEN would be 7-9 at best and KC would be 8-8 at worst so DEN couldn't win the division and there are already two wild card teams better than 7-9.

DEN out with:
- LOSS

I have DAL eliminated with a LOSS AND EITHER a PHIL win/tie OR a GB win/tie OR a TB win/tie.  A loss combined with a win or tie by any of those three teams and DAL is done.  If DAL loses, that gets them to 7-9 at best.   That record would eliminate them from winning the NFC East as NYG and PHIL play each other week 15 and one of them would be better than 7-9.  Also, and this is important to note, NYG plays GB week 16 so one of those teams is guaranteed to be better than 7-9 as well.  A NYG Win on it's own doesn't eliminate DAL with a loss as NYG could beat PHIL week 15 and GB week 16 and PHIL, GB and TB could lose out and DAL could win that tiebreaker at 7-9.  In that tiebreaker, DAL can still get to 6-6 in conf record even with a loss this week, and they can still sweep PHIL and, even though they lost H2H to GB, would beat GB and TB in 3-way wild card tiebreaker on conf record (6-6 to 5-7 for the other two teams).  HOWEVER, a PHIL win/tie by itself would eliminate DAL with a loss as that would get PHIL better than 7-9 AND when you factor in NYG and GB playing week 16, would get two wild card teams better than DAL at 7-9.  If neither NYG or PHIL win/tie this week, a GB or TB win/tie would eliminate DAL with a loss as that would put two wild card teams better than DAL at 7-9 and remember that NYG and PHIL still play each other week 15 which would keep DAL from winning the division.

DAL out with:
- LOSS + PHIL win/tie
- LOSS + GB win/tie
- LOSS + TB win/tie

MINN can also be eliminated this week.  I have MINN out with a LOSS AND CHI win/tie AND GB win AND EITHER a NO win/tie or TB win/tie.  A MINN loss would get them to 4-8 and 8-8 at best (they do have a chance to still get to 8-4 in conference).  If GB wins, that gets them to 8-8 at worst and GB has swept MINN.  Even though CHI-GB play each other week 17, we would still need a CHI win or tie to eliminate MINN this week as MINN could beat CHI on common opponents.  The CHI win/tie and GB win would relegate MINN to 3rd in the division at best.  So, we only need one more wild card to be either better than 8-8 or have tiebreaker advantage in all scenarios over MINN.  With NO at 8-3, a win or tie by them would secure that other wild card and NO, even though they beat MINN H2H week 1, could still lose to MINN in multi-team tiebreak based on conference record...so they need the win or tie in this scenario.  Also, a win or tie by 7-4 TB would also create a situation where TB plays NO week 17 and the winner (or "tie-ers") of that game would be better than 8-8.   So, a MINN loss plus the GB win plus a CHI win/tie and either a NO win/tie or a TB win/tie would eliminate MINN this year.

MINN out with:
- LOSS + CHI win/tie + GB win + NO win/tie
- LOSS + CHI win/tie + GB win + TB win/tie
Look for my posts in the comments below throughout the weekend for updates.   If significant Week 14 sceanrios surface on Sunday, I'll likely post a new blog on that.   Once we get into heavy tiebreaker scenarios, I'll likely split the AFC and NFC scenarios into separate blogs.

Enjoy!


Posted on: November 27, 2010 3:17 am
 

Here We Go Again! Playoff Race Blog 2010

It's that time of year again where we dive into all of the various NFL playoff race possibilities...including division clinching scenarios, homefield advantage throughout the playoffs, wild card spots, seeding possibilities and the inevitable elimination scenarios and ultimately draft positioning.

This year, much like last year, I'm going to post tiebreaker updates to this blog on a regular basis, react to scenario questions both in the blog and in appropriate threads and work with the CBSSports.com production team on providing the earliest and most up-to-date playoff scenarios available.  I'm also going to try and live blog this year more often with key updates DURING NFL games and provide updates for you the same way I do with CBS Sports and team personnel with an interest in scenarios.

WHY ME?
For some background, I handled the official tiebreakers for the NFL from the 1992 playoffs through the 1999 season and have worked with the League and their official stats source (Elias Sports Bureau) in compiling the official tiebreaker scenarios since leaving the League to join CBS SportsLine in 2000.  I have transitioned jobs from Executive Producer at CBS SportsLine (now CBSSports.com) to being the liaison for CBS Interactive to the CBS Entertainment Network and CBS TV Studios in Los Angeles...but I keep my fingers in sports through this venture and working with the CBS Sports division and various NFL teams and media outlets on playoff scenarios.  This allows CBSSports.com to publish what is typically the FIRST look at what will be OFFICIAL NFL tiebreaker scenarios.  I'll try and blog my way through the process...so you can get an insight into your favorite teams prospects (or maybe your mortal enemies) and get a better understanding how NFL Tiebreakers work and the interesting nuances that will surface.

As I stated last year, please DON'T BE SHY with the questions as I often get extremely insightful feedback from fans and closet tiebreaker gurus (there are many of you out there that will be ever-present on this board...and I LOVE IT!) that help me along the way.

With a large number of teams bunched at the top of many divisions, this is sure to be a complicated, challenging but very enjoyable tiebreaker ride in 2010.

FYI:   We already have CAROLINA (Week 11) AND DETROIT (Week 12) ELIMINATED THIS YEAR and may still add others to the mix during Week 12.  Stay Tuned! 

Joe Ferreira
(JoeNFL)

Posted on: December 28, 2009 5:23 pm
 

WEEK 17 AFC SCENARIOS - Chaos continues

I have to say that dealing with the below scenarios last night, particularly DENVER that has 16 possible clinching scenarios if you include ties and 10 without ties to get in, was one of the toughest week 16 follow-up nights in memory.   Having 8 teams within one game of each other at either 8-7 or 7-8 and 7 of those teams still have a chance to clinch a Wild Card spot has certainly created some chaos among teams, media and fans.

It should be noted that although you will see current playoff standings listing DEN and Jets as Wild Card teams ( http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/standi
ngs/playoffrace
 ), only the JETS and Ravens actually control their own destiny to capture playoff spots.  This is because the Playoff Race page is listing results "If the Season Ended Today".  As it stands among the 8-7 teams, the tiebreaker between NYJ, BAL, HOU and DEN, which becomes NYJ, BAL and DEN after HOU drops out on conf record, they do not have enough games (need four) to qualify among their common opponents (NE, CIN, IND, OAK) as BAL has not played OAK yet and NYJ has not played CIN.  Detail below.  If they each win, you'll see below that NYJ would have the common opponents tiebreaker advantage at 4-1 vs. 3-2 for DEN and 1-4 for BAL.   After that...it would revert to BAL, HOU and DEN and HOU would drop out again on conf record and BAL beat DEN H2H to claim the #6 seed.

Common opponents for BAL DEN NYJ
BAL record against NE: 0/1 (0.000) (games left 0)
BAL record against CIN: 0/2 (0.000) (games left 0)
BAL record against IND: 0/1 (0.000) (games left 0)
BAL record against OAK: 0/0 (NaN) (games left 1)
BAL overall record: 0/4 (0.000)

DEN record against NE: 1/0 (1.000) (games left 0)
DEN record against CIN: 1/0 (1.000) (games left 0)
DEN record against IND: 0/1 (0.000) (games left 0)
DEN record against OAK: 1/1 (0.500) (games left 0)
DEN overall record: 3/2 (0.600)

NYJ record against NE: 1/1 (0.500) (games left 0)
NYJ record against CIN: 0/0 (NaN) (games left 1)
NYJ record against IND: 1/0 (1.000) (games left 0)
NYJ record against OAK: 1/0 (1.000) (games left 0)
NYJ overall record: 3/1 (0.750)


AFC

  CLINCHED:   Indianapolis -- South division and homefield advantage.
              San Diego -- West division and first-round bye.
              Cincinnati -- North division.
              New England -- East division.
  ELIMINATED: Cleveland, Kansas City, Oakland, Buffalo, Tennessee.

Baltimore, the Jets, Denver, Pittsburgh and Houston can also make the playoffs
if they tie this week with various other things happening. Jacksonville and
Miami cannot make the playoffs with a tie.

 BALTIMORE RAVENS
  Baltimore clinches a playoff spot:
   1) BAL win

 NEW YORK JETS
  NY Jets clinch a playoff spot:
   1) NYJ win

 DENVER Broncos
  Denver clinches a playoff spot:
   1) DEN win + NYJ loss or tie + BAL loss or tie
   2) DEN win + NYJ loss or tie + PIT loss or tie
   3) DEN win + NYJ loss or tie + HOU win
   4) DEN win + BAL loss or tie + PIT loss or tie
   5) DEN win + BAL loss or tie + HOU win
   6) PIT loss + BAL loss + HOU loss + JAC loss
   7) PIT loss + BAL loss + HOU loss + NYJ loss
   8) PIT loss + BAL loss + JAC loss + NYJ loss
   9) PIT loss + HOU loss + JAC loss + NYJ loss
  10) MIA loss or tie + NYJ loss + BAL loss + HOU loss + JAC loss or tie

 PITTSBURGH Steelers
  Pittsburgh clinches a playoff spot:
   1) PIT win + HOU loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie
   2) PIT win + HOU loss or tie + BAL loss or tie
   3) PIT win + NYJ loss or tie + BAL loss or tie + DEN loss or tie

 HOUSTON Texans
  Houston clinches a playoff spot:
   1) HOU win + NYJ loss or tie + BAL loss or tie
   2) HOU win + NYJ loss or tie + DEN loss or tie
   3) HOU win + BAL loss or tie + DEN loss or tie

 JACKSONVILLE Jaguars
  Jacksonville clinches a playoff spot:
   1) JAC win + PIT loss + BAL loss + DEN loss + HOU loss
   2) JAC win + PIT loss + BAL loss + DEN loss + NYJ loss
   3) JAC win + PIT loss + BAL loss + HOU loss + NYJ loss
   4) JAC win + PIT loss + DEN loss + HOU loss + NYJ loss 
   5) JAC win + NYJ loss + DEN loss + HOU loss + BAL loss

 MIAMI Dolphins
  Miami clinches a playoff spot:
   1) MIA win + NYJ loss + BAL loss + HOU loss + JAC loss or tie

Posted on: December 28, 2009 5:02 pm
 

WEEK 17 NFC SCENARIOS - Seed positioning

Well...we made it.   On week 16, thanks to the Giants turning in a clunker of a game against CAR, the final two playoff spots were secured.

Official Scenarios are below (prior to CHI-MIN game).

NOTES:
- MIN wins tiebreaker over NO at 13-3 based on conf record (10-2 vs. 9-3)
- Although MIN has lead on #2 seed and 1st round bye, PHI, DAL and ARI can all still garner the #2 seed.  If MIN against CHI, only PHI can catch MIN (PHI wins tiebreaker on conf record).
- ARI wins 3-way tiebreaker at 11-5 with DAL and MIN (MIN drops out on conf record and ARI beats DAL on common opponents 4-1 to 2-3)
- PHI CANNOT be the #4 seed (if they win they will be #2 or 3 seed, if they lose they lose division title)
- DAL CANNOT be the #5 seed (if they lose they lose to GB based on overall or H2H)
- GB can only be the #6 seed if PHI loses and if GB loses in that case its very likely they would play ARI AGAIN a week later in the Wild Card round
- Right now, MIN can be any seed from #1 thru #4.  If they win tonight they can't be #4 and if they lose tonight they can't be #1.


WEEK 17 PLAYOFF PICTURE:

 NFC

  CLINCHED:   New Orleans -- South division and a first-round bye.
              Minnesota -- North division.
              Arizona -- West division.
              Philadelphia -- playoff spot.
              Green Bay -- playoff spot.
              Dallas -- playoff spot.
  ELIMINATED: Detroit, St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Washington, Chicago, Seattle,
              Carolina, Atlanta, San Francisco, NY Giants.

 NEW ORLEANS Saints
  New Orleans clinches homefield advantage:
  IF MINNESOTA BEATS CHICAGO
   1) NO win or tie
   2) MIN loss or tie
  IF CHICAGO BEATS MINNESOTA
   New Orleans clinches homefield advantage.

 MINNESOTA Vikings
  Minnesota clinches homefield advantage:
  IF MINNESOTA BEATS CHICAGO
   1) MIN win + NO loss
  Minnesota clinches a first-round bye:
  IF MINNESOTA BEATS CHICAGO 
   1) MIN win or tie
   2) PHI loss or tie
  IF CHICAGO BEATS MINNESOTA
   1) MIN win + PHI loss or tie
   2) MIN tie + PHI loss

 ARIZONA Cardinals
  Arizona clinches a first-round bye:
  IF CHICAGO BEATS MINNESOTA
   1) ARI win + MIN loss + PHI loss

 PHILADELPHIA Eagles
  Philadelphia clinches East division:
   1) PHI win or tie
  Philadelphia clinches a first-round bye:
  IF MINNESOTA BEATS CHICAGO
   1) PHI win + MIN loss
  IF CHICAGO BEATS MINNESOTA
   1) PHI win
   2) PHI tie + MIN loss or tie

 DALLAS Cowboys
  Dallas clinches East divison:
   1) DAL win
  Dallas clinches a first-round bye:
  IF CHICAGO BEATS MINNESOTA
   1) DAL win + MIN loss + ARI loss or tie

Posted on: December 22, 2009 1:50 am
 

TIEBREAKER PROCEDURES DISCUSSION

Due to popular demand, I am starting this thread to discuss general NFL Tiebreaker procedures.  Feel free to bring up any tiebreaker topics here, but let's keep the scenarios to the conference threads and let's try to limit this to procedures and historical discussions.

Also...if at all possible, let's try to keep comments brief unless detailed descriptions are absolutely necessary (Brett...that means you).

Look forward to the chat.

Here's a starter...

Let's imagine for a second that the six teams tied at 7-7 in the AFC were currently battling it out for Wild Card spots (i.e. BAL and DEN were 6-8 instead of 8-6).  The JAC, TEN, HOU divisional situation lends itself to the previous discussion of divisional tiebreakers and the current procedures language in the NFL By-Laws.

Is there any question as to how the tiebreakers are applied in this situation based on the procedures OR is the question still about certain language being superfluous? 
Posted on: December 22, 2009 1:32 am
 

2009 AFC SCENARIOS - Weeks 16 and 17

AFC
(Key Week 16 Games: BAL @ PIT, KC @ CIN, DEN @ PHI, HOU @ MIA, NYJ @ IND, JAC @ NE, SD @ TEN)  

SAN DIEGO Chargers
  San Diego clinches a first-round bye:
   1) SD win or tie
   2) NE loss or tie

NEW ENGLAND Patriots
  New England clinches East division:
   1) NE win or tie
   2) MIA loss or tie
  

CINCINNATI Bengals
  Cincinnati clinches North division:
   1) CIN win
   2) CIN tie + BAL loss or tie
   3) BAL loss
  Cincinnati clinches a playoff spot:
   1) CIN tie
   2) JAC loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie + HOU/MIA game ends in a tie
  

BALTIMORE Ravens
  Baltimore clinches a playoff spot:
   1) BAL win + JAC loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie
   2) BAL win + JAC loss or tie + DEN loss
   2) BAL win + MIA loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie + DEN loss
   3) BAL tie + NYJ loss + JAC loss + TEN loss or tie + HOU/MIA game ends in tie
  

DENVER Broncos
  Denver clinches a playoff spot:
   1) DEN win + JAC loss or tie + MIA loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie +
       PIT loss or tie
Posted on: December 22, 2009 1:26 am
 

2009 NFC SCENARIOS - Weeks 16 and 17

NFC
(Key Week 16 Games: CAR @ NYG, MIN @ CHI, DAL @ WAS, SEA @ GB, TB @ NO, DEN @ PHI)

NEW ORLEANS Saints
  New Orleans clinches homefield advantage throughout NFC playoffs:
   1) NO win or tie
   2) MIN loss or tie
  

MINNESOTA Vikings
  Minnesota clinches a first-round bye:
   1) MIN win + PHI loss or tie
   2) MIN tie + PHI loss
 

PHILADELPHIA Eagles
  Philadelphia clinches East division:
   1) PHI win + DAL loss or tie
   2) PHI tie + DAL loss
 

GREEN BAY Packers
  Green Bay clinches a playoff spot:
   1) GB win + NYG loss or tie
   2) GB win + DAL loss
   3) GB tie + NYG loss

DALLAS Cowbo
ys
  Dallas clinches a playoff spot:
   1) DAL win + NYG loss or tie
   2) DAL tie + NYG loss
  
Posted on: December 21, 2009 1:51 am
 

EARLY WEEK 16 SCENARIOS

Here's prelim look at Week 16 (i'll break this into AFC and NFC for Tuesday if that's the way people want it):

NFC
(Key Games: NYG at WAS Monday night, CAR @ NYG, MIN @ CHI, DAL @ WAS, SEA @ GB, TB @ NO, DEN @ PHI)

  NEW ORLEANS Saints
  New Orleans clinches homefield advantage throughout NFC playoffs:
   1) NO win or tie
   2) MIN loss or tie
  MINNESOTA Vikings
  Minnesota clinches a first-round bye:
   1) MIN win + PHI loss or tie
   2) MIN tie + PHI loss
  PHILADELPHIA Eagles
  Philadelphia clinches East division:
   1) PHI win + DAL loss or tie
   2) PHI tie + DAL loss
  GREEN BAY Packers
  Green Bay clinches a playoff spot:
  IF NY Giants BEAT WASHINGTON
   1) GB win + NYG loss or tie
   2) GB win + DAL loss
   3) GB tie + NYG loss
  IF WASHINGTON BEATS NY GIANTS
   1) GB win or tie
   2) NYG loss or tie
  DALLAS Cowboys
  Dallas clinches a playoff spot:
  IF NY GIANTS BEAT WASHINGTON
   1) DAL win + NYG loss or tie
   2) DAL tie + NYG loss
  IF WASHINGTON BEATS NY GIANTS
   1) DAL win or tie
   2) NYG loss or tie
 
 AFC
(Key Games: BAL @ PIT, KC @ CIN, DEN @ PHI, HOU @ MIA, NYJ @ IND, JAC @ NE, SD @ TEN)  

  SAN DIEGO Chargers
  San Diego clinches a first-round bye:
   1) SD win or tie
   2) NE loss or tie
  NEW ENGLAND Patriots
  New England clinches East division:
   1) NE win or tie
   2) MIA loss or tie
  CINCINNATI Bengals
  Cincinnati clinches North division:
   1) CIN win
   2) CIN tie + BAL loss or tie
   3) BAL loss
  Cincinnati clinches a playoff spot:
   1) CIN tie
   2) JAC loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie + HOU/MIA game ends in a tie
  BALTIMORE Ravens
  Baltimore clinches a playoff spot:
   1) BAL win + JAC loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie
   2) BAL win + JAC loss or tie + DEN loss
   2) BAL win + MIA loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie + DEN loss
   3) BAL tie + NYJ loss + JAC loss + TEN loss or tie + HOU/MIA game ends in tie
  DENVER Broncos
  Denver clinches a playoff spot:
   1) DEN win + JAC loss or tie + MIA loss or tie + NYJ loss or tie +
       PIT loss or tie

[Note:  I think DEN scenario works with HOU beating MIA because DEN would clinch SOV over HOU in this scenario.  In initial review, I have DEN +12 wins in unduplicated victories and HOU only has ability to gain 9 wins over last two weeks.] 
 
 
 
 
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