Miami Dolphins can’t clinch this week but others can in AFC

Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)
Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images) /

The Miami Dolphins still have a good shot at the post-season but they never can seem to take the easy route. This week, they will not clinch no matter what happens.

If the Dolphins lose this week, the Bills clinch the division. If the Bills win, they win the division. Miami is no longer competing for the division but they are hoping for a Wild Card spot and even that isn’t easy.

The Los Angeles Chargers are in pretty good shape right now and thanks to the head-to-head tie-breaking scenario, the Chargers with a win and losses by the Jets, Raiders, and Patriots, will secure a WC spot. Even the Ravens, who the Dolphins did beat, can clinch a playoff birth. Their scenario includes the Dolphins, Jets, and Patriots to lose as their easiest route in, this week.

Miami’s will face a tough but underperforming Green Bay Packers team on Christmas Day in what has become a suddenly must-win game. A loss will not take Miami out of the playoff chase but it would almost assuredly mean they would need to win both of their final two games and a showdown against the Jets in week 18 could be a win or go home type of game for both teams.

The Dolphins won’t have to face a mobile quarterback as Aaron Rodgers isn’t known for his ability to run the ball. He is, however, a very quick read and react QB who can make time in the pocket by moving around. The Dolphins will need to get pressure on him consistently, something other defenses have done with success this year so far.

A win by the Dolphins this week should set up a “win and you’re in” scenario next weekend in New England. The Packers face a lose and elimination scenario this weekend so there is a lot to play for…for both teams.

If somehow the Chargers and Ravens both clinch spots this week, there may only be one playoff spot left to be had. The Bengals, who currently lead the AFC North, will clinch with a win or a Jets loss on Thursday night.

If all of this happens, the Chiefs, Bills, Bengals, Ravens, and Chargers will all be in the postseason with two weeks to go. The AFC South will come down to the Titans and Jaguars leaving the Dolphins, Patriots, and Jets competing for the final WC spot.