Monday, July 1, 2013

Football Contest: Week 17 Scenarios

Now that we only have 1 week left, I don't have to do 10,000 random simulations.  I can simply look at the records and tiebreakers to determine who ends up where.

Here are the current standings:

Let's look at the AFC Wild Card scenarios.  The Dolphins have clinched a spot, so there is only one WC spot left. The Chargers and Jags are in the best position to grab the other WC spot.  The Steelers, Bengals, and Colts are also still slightly in contention should the Jags and Chargers both lose. 

In the NFC, the 49ers and Cardinals play each other this week, so one WC spot is guaranteed to be a 9-win team.  If the second Wild Card spot ends up being an 8-win team, things get interesting.  Tiebreaks go by division first. 

The Eagles beat the Cowboys twice, so only the Eagles can come out of the East.

 In the North, the Lions play the Bears in Week 17.  That means a Bears win puts both teams at 8-8.  Detroit still owns all of the tiebreakers, so the Lions are the only team that can come out of the North.

In the South, the winner of the Bucs-Falcons game wins the division at 9-7.  The loser may then have to contend with the Saints.  The Falcons own the Saints tiebreak, but the Bucs don't. 

As for the West, the team that wins the 49ers-Cardinals game sits at 9-7.  Both teams hold tiebreakers over the Seahawks, so the loser will go into the pool of possible 8-8 playoff teams.  Only the Cardinals hold tiebreakers to get a playoff spot. 

Here are the possible scenarios for each team.


As for the seeding of Division Champions, the following scenarios exist:



So you don't have to calculate your odds, here are the percentages of all scenarios for which each team grabs a spot:

Thanks to a 4-game winning streak, the Chargers are in command of the second AFC spot.  The Chargers can feel even better about their situation since their Week 17 opponent is the Raiders (AKA, the worst team in the league).  I find this matchup pretty intriguing as Greg (Chargers owner) and Spiegel (Raiders owner) are friends.  The Raiders have been eliminated for a while now, but can still spoil the Chargers' fun.  I can feel Greg getting nervous already.

Looking at the scenarios, you can see that neither the Falcons nor Buccaneers hold tiebreaks to get a spot if they lose.  That means their Week 17 game is do or die.

Good luck, and see you on Sunday.

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