The winless Browns have been so bad this season that just in case the team manages to go 0-16.
However, maybe they need to pump the brakes on planning that parade because there's still a chance the Browns could be getting a SUPER BOWL PARADE this season. As crazy as it sounds, the Browns still have an outside shot at winning the Super Bowl and that's because they haven't been eliminated from playoff contention.
That's right, the 0-10 Browns can still get to the postseason, they're just going to need about 50 things to go their way, but that's not what's important here, the important thing is that they're still alive.
if the Browns want to make the playoffs, let's start with the obvious: They have to win out.
That means Cleveland's road to the postseason would start this week in Cincinnati. If the Patriots can start a playoff run by going "on to Cincinnati," then why can't the Browns?
After beating the Bengals, the Browns would have to beat the Chargers (at L.A.), Packers, Ravens, Bears (at Chicago) and Steelers (at Pittsburgh). So basically, a team that hasn't won a game all season would have to win six games in a row.
At that point, the Browns would finish with a 6-10 record. To get to the postseason, the Browns would need the 5-5 Ravens to also finish 6-10. The catch here is that the Ravens one win would have to come against the Colts in Week 16.
The other part of this scenario is that the Browns would need the Bills and Dolphins to tie at 6-10 in the AFC East. The Jets would have to finish at 5-11, because if they finished at 6-10, they hold a head-to-head tiebreaker over the Browns.
The complicated part with the Bills and Dolphins is that they still have to play each other twice. Since the Bills already have five wins, they would need to go 1-5 down the stretch with their one victory coming against the Dolphins.
In a nutshell: The Browns, Ravens, Dolphins and Bills all finish 6-10 and pretty much every other team in the AFC finishes 5-11 or worse. Oh, and the Browns also need the Patriots and Chiefs to win out, plus the Jaguars would have to go 5-1 over their final six games.
If all that happens, then your AFC playoffs will look like this:
1. New England Patriots (14-2)
2. Jacksonville Jaguars (12-4)
3. Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4)
4. Kansas City Chiefs (12-4)
5. Tennessee Titans (11-5)
6. CLEVELAND BROWNS (6-10)
The Browns would win a four-way tiebreaker with the Bills, Dolphins and Ravens. They would take the tiebreaker over the Ravens based on best winning percentage in division games, which is the same tiebreaker the Bills would win over the Dolphins. At that point, the Browns would get in the postseason based on a strength of victory tiebreaker over the Bills.
Just to rehash the Browns' playoff chances and what needs to happen:
- Browns (0-10): Win out
- Patriots (8-2): Win out
- Chiefs (6-4): Win out
- Steelers (8-2): Go 4-2 down the stretch with three of those wins over Ravens, Bengals and Texans
- Ravens (5-5): Go 1-5 down the stretch with the one win coming in Week 16 over the Colts
- Bills (5-5): Go 1-5 down the stretch with the one win coming over the Dolphins
- Dolphins (4-6): Go 2-4 down the stretch with one win over Buffalo and one win over Denver
- Chargers (4-6), Broncos (3-7), Raiders (4-6), Colts (3-7), Texans (4-6) and Jets (4-6) all finish 5-11
So yeah, I'm telling you there's a chance.
By the way, there are actually multiple scenarios where the Browns could get in. Someone over at Reddit presented one where the Browns get in with multiple ties by other teams over the final six weeks of the season, but we thought we'd keep ties out of it here to make it as simple as possible, and really, it's still not that simple. You can check our scenario by clicking here and heading to ESPN's playoff machine.