AFC Playoff Watch: The Quest for the #1 seed

Ed Hillel

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Pittsburgh has a tie, there's no tiebreaker to be had.

Baltimore is in control of its destiny but can still lose it all next week. They are entirely out if they lose and PIT wins.
Not if Pitt wins, Baltimore wins, and Indy-Titans tie! Three way 9-6-1 for the last spot.
 

alydar

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Not if Pitt wins, Baltimore wins, and Indy-Titans tie! Three way 9-6-1 for the last spot.
Right, a tie here - esp since it will likely be the flexed game - would be wild.

Edit - and if three teams all finish 9-6-1 I believe Indy gets in based on conference record
 

alydar

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not true - but IND/TEN are not going to tie, so basically true
Hmm, I’ll need to think about this. I mean, I know I could look it up somewhere, but sometimes working it out yourself is fun... this scenario I think also requires a Baltimore tie, for both PIT and BAL to make it?
 

LesterFan

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If IND/TEN tie wouldn't IND get the tiebreaker between them since they won the first matchup? Then it would come down to IND/PIT. Head-to-head doesn't apply, they'd be tied in conference record, then it would come down to record in common games (min of 4 common games) then strength of victory followed by strength of schedule.
 

alydar

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If IND/TEN tie wouldn't IND get the tiebreaker between them since they won the first matchup? Then it would come down to IND/PIT. Head-to-head doesn't apply, they'd be tied in conference record, then it would come down to record in common games (min of 4 common games) then strength of victory followed by strength of schedule.
That’s right. That’s a lot of looking stuff up!
 

DeadlySplitter

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and according to the playoff machine, PIT would win the common opponent record tiebreaker over IND in the scenario described. And I think it would be in no small part because we beat IND but not PIT.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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That's all the unlikely ones. The Ravens make the playoffs if they win out and one of a hundred other things go their way. They win the division if they win out and the Steelers lose 1 game, or they win 1 and the Steelers lose both.

If the Steelers win out, then the Ravens can't win the division. At that point, to get the #6 seed (AFCW has #5)...

They can win out (10-6) and least 1 HOU W - which, I guess, would mean Houston wins the AFCS and BAL owns tiebreakers over IND/TEN but not over HOU
If HOU loses out, then it becomes a super muddled mess because, presumably, Houston would end up losing a tiebreaker for the AFCS to either IND or TEN, and then we're talking about strength of victory between BAL & HOU, which is not settled at this point. So BAL is rooting, at that point, for both IND & TEN to lose at least one game (and they play each other in week 17).

If Baltimore only wins 1 game and the Steelers win at least 1 game (and assuming the Patriots win 1 game), then to get the #6 seed at 9-7...

they need at least 1 TEN L AND
at least 1 MIA L AND
TEN over IND

OR

at least 1 TEN L AND
at least 1 MIA L AND
NYG over IND AND
a meaningful majority of other things to go right, because we're talking about Strength of Victory, and they're trailing. Somehow, if DAL beats TB, they're pretty screwed, needing 7 specific other games to go right.

If Baltimore wins 0 games, they don't make the playoffs.
Looks like Baltimore can’t get a wild card anymore - Baltimore wins or Steelers lose and they get the North.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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I'd rather see Pittsburgh in the playoffs over Baltimore be ause they worry me much less, but I really want to see the Steelers miss the playoffs...

Quite the dilemma.
 

j44thor

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I'd rather see Pittsburgh in the playoffs over Baltimore be ause they worry me much less, but I really want to see the Steelers miss the playoffs...

Quite the dilemma.
I'd be much more worried about phantom DPI calls against PIT than BAL. BAL is also much easier to game plan against on defense. NE could play man cover 1/0 80% of the game against BAL.
It would be a slugfest for sure but I think NE matches up better against BAL than PIT.
 

dcmissle

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From a competitive standpoint — the potential to do damage in the playoffs — Pittsburgh being out while Indy/Tenn is in: is a joke.

But the system is the system.
 

johnmd20

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From a competitive standpoint — the potential to do damage in the playoffs — Pittsburgh being out while Indy/Tenn is in: is a joke.

But the system is the system.
You are what your record says you are. Indy is good, anyway. Tennessee is a little iffier, their offense is laughable. Mariota is a calamity under center. But maybe Gabbert can get it done. Or maybe not.
 

tims4wins

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From a competitive standpoint — the potential to do damage in the playoffs — Pittsburgh being out while Indy/Tenn is in: is a joke.

But the system is the system.
Steelers have 2 wins against playoff teams: Pats and 1-1 vs Baltimore. Also lost to KC Saints and Chargers. 2-4 against playoff teams plus a loss to Denver and Oakland and a tie against the Browns. Big whoop if they can do damage.
 

dcmissle

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You are what your record says you are. Indy is good, anyway. Tennessee is a little iffier, their offense is laughable. Mariota is a calamity under center. But maybe Gabbert can get it done. Or maybe not.
I am not arguing the result should be different. You know going in that each game is precious. You know this at the beginning of the season.

Pittsburgh would annihilate Tennessee on a neutral field.
 

johnmd20

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I am not arguing the result should be different. You know going in that each game is precious. You know this at the beginning of the season.

Pittsburgh would annihilate Tennessee on a neutral field.
Agreed, Tennessee has done it with mirrors and magic wands. They are like the Giants from a couple of years ago. Easy schedule, a couple of close wins and they squeak into the playoffs and then get destroyed.
 

j44thor

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I am not arguing the result should be different. You know going in that each game is precious. You know this at the beginning of the season.

Pittsburgh would annihilate Tennessee on a neutral field.
Pitt seems to play down to the level of their competition, not unlike a lot of teams.
They won 3 games by more than 10 and lost one game by more than 10 and every other game was decided by 7 or less. They would probably beat TN but I doubt they would annihilate them.
 

dcmissle

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They lost in Oakland, that is pretty close to a neutral field no?
Yes. And the Pats got destroyed @Jax, Det and Tenn, and the last play @Mia will probably cost them the 1 seed.

And the difference between @KC and @NE in a final AFC game is night and day.

So shit happens.
 

Seels

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Baltimore is a nightmare matchup in the playoffs. Their biggest strength is running the ball and the Pats have had various games they've given up 8 yards a carry. No fucking thanks. I could see Jackson having a Kaepernick v Packers performance against the Pats.
 

soxhop411

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So we need to be Broncos and raiders fans next week?

Both of them win and we get the number 1 seed?
 

SirPsychoSquints

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NYT simulator says patriots get 1 seed if all three KC LAC NE are tied. I don’t know the math.

Edit: it’s because KC would win the division and the Patriots would win the H2H tiebreaker with either KC ir KC/HOU.
 

Ed Hillel

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No, I think the Chargers win the 3rd tie-breaker vs. Pats. Best Pats can do is 2 seed.
No, the AFC West tiebreaker happens first because they are same division, so KC wins that, then we beat KC. So if KC and SD lose and we win, Pats are one seed.
 

j44thor

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NYT simulator says patriots get 1 seed if all three KC LAC NE are tied. I don’t know the math.
Yes and if HOU is included in that grouping they would be the #2 seed with KC the #3 seed LAC #5 seed.

Basically as long as NE/KC/LAC are all tied NE is #1 seed because KC wins tie-breaker over LAC and NE has tiebreaker over KC.
 

dcmissle

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No, the AFC West tiebreaker happens first because they are same division, so KC wins that, then we beat KC. So if KC and SD lose and we win, Pats are one seed.
I’d like to have the payout on a Denver/Oakland/NE win parlay.
 

RedOctober3829

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If it's Indy at Houston and LA at Baltimore with KC 1 NE 2 there's a decent shot that the Divisional Round could be Indy at KC which would be a great matchup for the Pats' chances to host the AFC title game. The Chargers or Ravens would be a tough matchup for the Pats offense however.
 

j44thor

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Baltimore is a nightmare matchup in the playoffs. Their biggest strength is running the ball and the Pats have had various games they've given up 8 yards a carry. No fucking thanks. I could see Jackson having a Kaepernick v Packers performance against the Pats.
The games NE have been gashed on the ground are mostly the games where they faced quality QBs and stayed with a lighter box. PIT/MN/GB all come to mind with MIA as an outlier.
BAL is so one dimensional that I think NE could do enough to slow that running game. They could play cover 1/0 vast majority of the game and keep 9 in the box. Lamar Jackson is a terrible passer. I'd like my chances going up against him in the playoffs. Much more so than an LAC team that is extremely well balanced on offense.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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TEN and IND are both win and in, plus a Houston loss for the division.

MIN is in with a win OR philly loss. Philly is obviously the flip side.

Rams get the #2 with a win or bears loss.

Saints locked into 1, Dallas locked into 4.

Seattle win or Vikings loss for the 5, otherwise 6.

Not a lot of drama in the NFC.
 

RedOctober3829

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Looking at a possible playoff TV schedule if KC/NE and NO/LAR are the top 4 seeds

Wild Card
Saturday
4:30 Indy at Houston ABC/ESPN
8:15 Minnesota at Chicago NBC

Sunday
1:00 LA Chargers at Baltimore CBS
4:25 Seattle at Dallas FOX

Divisional
Saturday
4:30 Chicago at LA Rams NBC
8:15 Baltimore/LA Chargers at Patriots CBS

Sunday
1:00 Indy at KC CBS
4:25 Seattle/Dallas at New Orleans FOX
 

DeadlySplitter

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1. KC 11-4 (OAK)
2. New England 10-5 (NYJ)
3. Houston 10-5 (JAX)
4. Baltimore 9-6 (CLE)

5. LA Chargers 11-4 (@DEN)
6. Indy 9-6 (@TEN)

Tennessee 9-6 (IND)
Pittsburgh 8-6-1 (CIN)
 

SMU_Sox

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Last year there was nothing meh about the Eagle's defense. The fact that the Pats gained so many yards against it is a testament to how freaking good they were last year and also the success BB has had against Schwartz in his career.

I think KC will run into problems eventually this year when they face a team that can beat their defense (an easy task) and slow down their offense a bit (not such an easy task). I would imagine they would have difficulties against the Rams, Chargers, and Seahawks. They might win 2/3 of those but I don't think KC runs the table. I'd also probably take more balanced NFC teams against them in the SB but that's looking too far out.
They have played five road games. The defense has played like absolute trash in four of them (all except Buffalo) and the offense has played like absolute trash in four of them (all except Chicago). I would not mark down wins at NYJ and at MIA in ink, much less Pittsburgh.

EDIT: not to speak for dcm, who may have his own reasons.
If I post enough times I’ll get one right eventually... SuperNomario though is a different story.

There are five difficult outs this year if the playoff picture holds in the AFC (all expect for IND/TEN)
Chargers, Ravens, and Texans are all well balanced squads. (Pit is too but inconsistent)

The Patriots are a well balanced squad too but never at the same time. If this team can ever fire on all cylinders at the same time they will be competitive against anyone in the playoffs and/or Super Bowl. They just haven’t done that.

KC isn’t well balanced but even with the Hunt fiasco they still have a potent offense and likely HFA. Road defense against KC is enough of a disadvantage that KC is dangerous too.

I don’t know what to expect from this team. It’s been a weird season. If they went a roll it wouldn’t surprise me. But it wouldn’t surprise me if they laid an egg either. Seems like everything has been leading up to a road loss in the playoffs.