The Miami Dolphins hold the 7th position in the AFC hunt for the post-season but they need help to move up. That help could come this weekend as week 15 gets under way.
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Despite their 11-2 record, the New England Patriots have not yet clinched a playoff spot. The reason is that the Miami Dolphins have slid far enough back to give them the division. That could change this weekend however if the Patriots win, they clinch the division regardless of what the Dolphins do. Here is a look at the playoff situation heading into week 15 and who would help the Dolphins get into slot number 6.
It’s hard to believe that we are this late in the season and no team has clinched their division in the AFC. Only one, Dallas, in the NFC has clinched. The AFC has tough races that will play out in the next three weeks in the North, South, and West.
Of the four divisions, only New England can win the division this weekend with either a win or a Dolphins loss. Kansas City and Oakland can both clinch a playoff berth with a win this weekend. The Chiefs will host the Titans and the Raiders will visit San Diego.
The question still remains whether or not the Dolphins fans should root for the Patriots. If the Patriots lose this weekend to Denver and next week to the Jets, then Miami would have a shot at the division but the likelihood of the Patriots losing at home to the lowly Jets isn’t likely. Beating Denver would be a huge help to the Dolphins playoff chances and put them in control of their own destiny.
New England at Denver: Root for New England.
With the Chiefs one game away from making the post-season this weekends game against the Titans who beat the Broncos last weekend is big. Big for the Dolphins too. A loss by the Titans and a win by Miami will put the Dolphins up by two. It’s important because the Dolphins do not hold the tie-breaker one on one with the Titans.
Tennessee at Kansas City: Root for Kansas City.
The next big threat to a Dolphins post-season is the Baltimore Ravens who like Tennessee owns the head to head tie breaker over the Dolphins. A loss by the Ravens to the Eagles would move the Ravens two games back of Miami with two weeks left. While it wouldn’t eliminate the possibility of Miami losing a spot to either team, it would go a long way in making that much harder.
Baltimore at Philadelphia: Root for the Eagles.
The Steelers and Dolphins have the same record but the Steelers have a division lead and while Miami owns the tie-breaker head to head with the Steelers it might be more beneficial if the Steelers can continue to win and keep the Ravens out of the picture.
Of course having the Ravens jump into the division lead helps the Dolphins as they would own the tie-breaker over Pittsburgh but with the Ravens being a game back it might be good to keep them there and root for Pittsburgh.
This will not matter however if the Ravens win against the Eagles because they will keep pace with the Steelers who they play next week.
Steelers at Cincinnati: Push. If the Eagles are winning root for the Steelers but if the Ravens are winning root for the Bengals. This would put a showdown next week with either the Ravens taking the division and the Steelers falling back a game behind Miami OR the Ravens falling back a game.
The AFC South teams are really not a concern this weekend. The Texans, Colts, and Titans can not clinch the division and whomever does not win the division will not likely take the 6th seed although the Titans would hold the advantage in a three-way tie with the Dolphins and Broncos as they have beaten them both.
More important than anything else, the Dolphins have to win this weekend against the Jets. It’s a crucial game both in the division, the conference record, and the faith of the team in themselves and Matt Moore replacing Ryan Tannehill.