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NFL Playoffs – After Week 6

The one thing about both NCAA & NFL football this year is that it is certainly keeping us guessing. With respect to both the college & pro games, only the Jets have somewhat separated themselves from everyone else. When you take a look at the NFL, you can easily argue that the AFC South, AFC West, NFC East, NFC North & NFC West are complete messes with no easily identifiable team that has taken the lead within that division. This past week could have given us some clarity, but the Bears lose to Seattle, the Chiefs lose to the Texans, the Falcons lose to the Eagles, the Packers lose to the Dolphins & the Ravens lose to the Patriots. I’m not even sure we can garner any predictive value from past seasons at this point. Here is where we stand.

AFC Playoff Seedings After Week 6

1. New York Jets 5-1 (Last Week #2)
2. Pittsburgh Steelers 4-1 (#6)
3. Houston Texans 4-2 (#4)
4. Kansas City Chiefs 3-2 (#3)
5. New England Patriots 4-1 (#5)
6. Baltimore Ravens 4-2 (#1)
7. Tennessee Titans 4-2 (#8)
8. Indianapolis Colts 4-2 (#9)
9. Miami Dolphins 3-2 (#10)
10. Jacksonville Jaguars 3-3 (#7)
11. Cincinnati Bengals 2-3 (#12)
12. Oakland Raiders 2-4 (#11)
13. Denver Broncos 2-4 (#13)
14. San Diego Chargers 2-4 (#14)
15. Cleveland Browns 1-5 (#15)
16. Buffalo Bills 0-5 (#16)

The big winners this week were the Pittsburgh Steelers who jumped from the #6 seed last week to a first round bye at the #2 seed this week after beating the Browns while the Ravens took on a second loss to the Patriots. You really can’t say enough about the Steelers & their 4-1 start. I don’t think anyone would have predicted this much success knowing that Roethlisberger was going to miss 25% of their games. Big Ben looked more than solid with 300+ passing yards along with 3TD against Cleveland, but then again it was the Browns so who knows if some rust will show up against a much better opponent. The big losers are the aforementioned Baltimore Ravens who dropped 5 spots from the overall #1 seed a week ago down to the #6 seed after losing to New England. The Ravens are going to be interesting moving forward because they have a head to head tie breaker over the Jets due to their 10-9 opening week win over New York. The Jets have to stay ahead of Baltimore because if they have the same record & both win the division, then Baltimore has the tie breaker. If they both end up wild card teams, then again Baltimore has the tie breaker if they finish with the same record. It’s an interesting thought moving forward.

NFC Playoff Seedings After Week 6

1. New York Giants 4-2 (Last Week #6)
2. Atlanta Falcons 4-2 (#1)
3. Chicago Bears 4-2 (#2)
4. Arizona Cardinals 3-2 (#4)
5. New Orleans Saints 4-2 (#7)
6. Philadelphia Eagles 4-2 (#9)
7. Seattle Seahawks 3-2 (#10)
8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 3-2 (#5)
9. Washington Redskins 3-3 (#3)
10. St. Louis Rams 3-3 (#11)
11. Green Bay Packers 3-3 (#8)
12. Minnesota Vikings 2-3 (#12)
13. Dallas Cowboys 1-4 (#13)
14. Detroit Lions 1-5 (#14)
15. San Francisco 49ers 1-5 (#15)
16. Carolina Panthers 0-5 (#16)

The big winners this week in the NFC are the the New York Giants who jump 5 spots to the overall #1 seed in the conference. The G-Men pulled out a tough one against a team that doesn’t go down easily in the Detroit Lions. The Giants really benefitted from most other NFC contenders losing. The Falcons, Redskins, Bucs, & Bears all lost while the Arizona Cardinals didn’t play leaving them at least a half game behind New York in overall record. The big loser also resides in the NFC East as Washington dropped 6 spots from #3 a week ago to a completely out of the playoffs #9 this week. It was actually a tough break for Washington. They had to face Indianapolis with a new DC in Jim Haslett. I love what Haslett has been doing with the defense, but against Peyton Manning it was almost an unwinnable situation playing at night on primetime where Manning hardly every loses. Dropping to 3-3 hurts especially bad because both New York & Philly won putting the Redskins at no better than 3rd in the NFC East which drops them down quite a bit.

Wild Card Matchups

#6 Baltimore Ravens @ #3 Houston Texans
#5 New England Patriots @ #4 Kansas City Chiefs
#6 Philadelphia Eagles @ #3 Chicago Bears
#5 New Orleans Saints @ #4 Arizona Cardinals

The Patriots/Chiefs matchup is the most interesting for me. Remember that KC has their GM, OC & DC all coming from New England’s Super Bowl winning years. The Chiefs also have Matt Cassel at QB who took over for Tom Brady when Brady missed the 2008 season. It would be quite a sight seeing both Romeo Crenell & Charlie Weis coaching against their old boss Bill Belichick. The Eagles/Bears give us a real old school NFL matchup while the Saints/Cardinals would be rematch from last season when both met in the divisional round.

The Chiefs/Patriots are the headliner for me though with all the backstory there. I think New England would probably take KC to the woodshed, but the game would be in Arrowhead which isn’t the easiest place in the NFL to play.

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October 19, 2010 - Posted by | NFL, NFL Playoffs

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