Wild Card Tie-Breaker Scenarios

TheCardinal

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Going 9-7 puts us in good position to make the playoffs.

Going 8-8 makes it much more difficult, and could come down to a very tight strength-of-victory (SOV) tie-breaker with Minnesota, if they win an exact combination of games. We could still catch TB at 8-8 for one spot should they lose out, but for the sake of trying to simplify matters, we'll concede that spot for now and leave it at just one open spot at 8-8. We would need the 49ers to lose at least one more game since they would beat us in tie-breakers at 8-8. Then, if nobody from MIN/CHI/DET reaches 8-8, we're good. However, if either CHI or DET gets to 8-8, we would NEED the Vikings to win exactly 8 games to cover them up (MIN has clinched divisional tie-breakers over both CHI and DET). MIN would HAVE TO beat CHI and NO, and their remaining loss would HAVE TO be to DET (common game) to push it to the SOV tie-breaker. Also, we would need for WSH to NOT be 8-8 as a wild-card (only way would be if NYG wins the East at 8-8).

Now for the SOV scenarios. MIN's victims start with 50 wins (forced outcomes included). ARI's victims start with 43 wins, PLUS either 4.5 (PHI), 5 (SF), OR 9 (LAR) depending on who we beat for our 8th win. Below are the games that would matter:

ARI gets a "point" for
(wk15) NYJ over LAR
(15) BUF over DEN
(15) NYG over CLE
(16) SF over ARI
(16) WSH over CRL
(16) NYJ over CLE
(16) DAL over PHI
(16) SEA over LAR
(16) BUF over NE
(16) NYG over BAL
(17) WSH over PHI
(17) NYJ over NE
(17) BUF over MIA
The SF/DAL, WSH/SEA, SF/SEA, NYG/DAL games already gave us points, included in the 43.
If we only beat PHI: guaranteed points from PHI/DAL (wk16), and PHI/WSH (17)
If we only beat SF again: can get additional points for SF over DAL (15), SF over SEA (17)
If we only beat LAR: guaranteed points from LAR/NYJ (15), and LAR/SEA (16)

MIN gets a "point" for
(15) HOU over IND
(15) DET over TEN
(15) JAX over BAL
(15) NO over KC
(16) HOU over CIN
(16) GB over TEN
(16) DET over TB
(16) CRL over WSH
(16) CHI over JAC
(17) HOU over TEN
(17) CRL over NO
(17) JAX over IND
(17) CHI over GB
(17) NO over CRL
The CRL/GB, DET/MIN games already gave them points, included in the 50. Since they would've beaten CHI twice, the original points from CHI/JAX and CHI/GB are already included in the 50, but can get a second point with CHI wins as listed above.

This is not to say we should root for ALL of our points and against ALL of theirs (obviously, we don't want SF over ARI). In the AFC games, though, it wouldn't hurt to have our teams win and their teams lose. There is also a way to get in at 7-9 with more SOV scenarios, but I'll hold off those for now.
 

dreamcastrocks

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Going 9-7 puts us in good position to make the playoffs.

Going 8-8 makes it much more difficult, and could come down to a very tight strength-of-victory (SOV) tie-breaker with Minnesota, if they win an exact combination of games. We could still catch TB at 8-8 for one spot should they lose out, but for the sake of trying to simplify matters, we'll concede that spot for now and leave it at just one open spot at 8-8. We would need the 49ers to lose at least one more game since they would beat us in tie-breakers at 8-8. Then, if nobody from MIN/CHI/DET reaches 8-8, we're good. However, if either CHI or DET gets to 8-8, we would NEED the Vikings to win exactly 8 games to cover them up (MIN has clinched divisional tie-breakers over both CHI and DET). MIN would HAVE TO beat CHI and NO, and their remaining loss would HAVE TO be to DET (common game) to push it to the SOV tie-breaker. Also, we would need for WSH to NOT be 8-8 as a wild-card (only way would be if NYG wins the East at 8-8).

Now for the SOV scenarios. MIN's victims start with 50 wins (forced outcomes included). ARI's victims start with 43 wins, PLUS either 4.5 (PHI), 5 (SF), OR 9 (LAR) depending on who we beat for our 8th win. Below are the games that would matter:

ARI gets a "point" for
(wk15) NYJ over LAR
(15) BUF over DEN
(15) NYG over CLE
(16) SF over ARI
(16) WSH over CRL
(16) NYJ over CLE
(16) DAL over PHI
(16) SEA over LAR
(16) BUF over NE
(16) NYG over BAL
(17) WSH over PHI
(17) NYJ over NE
(17) BUF over MIA
The SF/DAL, WSH/SEA, SF/SEA, NYG/DAL games already gave us points, included in the 43.
If we only beat PHI: guaranteed points from PHI/DAL (wk16), and PHI/WSH (17)
If we only beat SF again: can get additional points for SF over DAL (15), SF over SEA (17)
If we only beat LAR: guaranteed points from LAR/NYJ (15), and LAR/SEA (16)

MIN gets a "point" for
(15) HOU over IND
(15) DET over TEN
(15) JAX over BAL
(15) NO over KC
(16) HOU over CIN
(16) GB over TEN
(16) DET over TB
(16) CRL over WSH
(16) CHI over JAC
(17) HOU over TEN
(17) CRL over NO
(17) JAX over IND
(17) CHI over GB
(17) NO over CRL
The CRL/GB, DET/MIN games already gave them points, included in the 50. Since they would've beaten CHI twice, the original points from CHI/JAX and CHI/GB are already included in the 50, but can get a second point with CHI wins as listed above.

This is not to say we should root for ALL of our points and against ALL of theirs (obviously, we don't want SF over ARI). In the AFC games, though, it wouldn't hurt to have our teams win and their teams lose. There is also a way to get in at 7-9 with more SOV scenarios, but I'll hold off those for now.

Very informative. If you are willing to keep this thread updated until the end of the season, I will sticky it.
 

PACardsFan

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Going 9-7 puts us in good position to make the playoffs.

Going 8-8 makes it much more difficult, and could come down to a very tight strength-of-victory (SOV) tie-breaker with Minnesota, if they win an exact combination of games. We could still catch TB at 8-8 for one spot should they lose out, but for the sake of trying to simplify matters, we'll concede that spot for now and leave it at just one open spot at 8-8. We would need the 49ers to lose at least one more game since they would beat us in tie-breakers at 8-8. Then, if nobody from MIN/CHI/DET reaches 8-8, we're good. However, if either CHI or DET gets to 8-8, we would NEED the Vikings to win exactly 8 games to cover them up (MIN has clinched divisional tie-breakers over both CHI and DET). MIN would HAVE TO beat CHI and NO, and their remaining loss would HAVE TO be to DET (common game) to push it to the SOV tie-breaker. Also, we would need for WSH to NOT be 8-8 as a wild-card (only way would be if NYG wins the East at 8-8).

Now for the SOV scenarios. MIN's victims start with 50 wins (forced outcomes included). ARI's victims start with 43 wins, PLUS either 4.5 (PHI), 5 (SF), OR 9 (LAR) depending on who we beat for our 8th win. Below are the games that would matter:

ARI gets a "point" for
(wk15) NYJ over LAR
(15) BUF over DEN
(15) NYG over CLE
(16) SF over ARI
(16) WSH over CRL
(16) NYJ over CLE
(16) DAL over PHI
(16) SEA over LAR
(16) BUF over NE
(16) NYG over BAL
(17) WSH over PHI
(17) NYJ over NE
(17) BUF over MIA
The SF/DAL, WSH/SEA, SF/SEA, NYG/DAL games already gave us points, included in the 43.
If we only beat PHI: guaranteed points from PHI/DAL (wk16), and PHI/WSH (17)
If we only beat SF again: can get additional points for SF over DAL (15), SF over SEA (17)
If we only beat LAR: guaranteed points from LAR/NYJ (15), and LAR/SEA (16)

MIN gets a "point" for
(15) HOU over IND
(15) DET over TEN
(15) JAX over BAL
(15) NO over KC
(16) HOU over CIN
(16) GB over TEN
(16) DET over TB
(16) CRL over WSH
(16) CHI over JAC
(17) HOU over TEN
(17) CRL over NO
(17) JAX over IND
(17) CHI over GB
(17) NO over CRL
The CRL/GB, DET/MIN games already gave them points, included in the 50. Since they would've beaten CHI twice, the original points from CHI/JAX and CHI/GB are already included in the 50, but can get a second point with CHI wins as listed above.

This is not to say we should root for ALL of our points and against ALL of theirs (obviously, we don't want SF over ARI). In the AFC games, though, it wouldn't hurt to have our teams win and their teams lose. There is also a way to get in at 7-9 with more SOV scenarios, but I'll hold off those for now.

Wow! I can see where your passions lie. And your very good at it for sure. Here's my path to the playoffs:
1. Beat Philly
2. Beat SF
3. Beat LAR

Old fashioned KISS approach:D
 
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TheCardinal

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Thanks! I’ll keep it updated.

Just to clarify, this only applies at 8-8 (or possibly 7-9) if the Vikings lose to Detroit. At 9-7, the Vikings would have beaten Detroit in Week 17 and thus win the tie-breaker over us on common games.
 

don7031

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AT 9-7 the Bears / Vikings have the tie breaker over the Cardinals who have the tie breaker over Tampa Bay.

Interesting enough on the final weekend, the Cardinals and Bears could both be in a win and you're in situation against an opponent playing for the number one seed and lone bye.
 
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TheCardinal

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The Chargers-Raiders game had no impact on the SOV tie-breaker, nor the next step, strength-of-schedule. I suppose it could have had an effect on the 7th step, best off/def ranking among all teams, if it gets that far. :) Coin toss is the 11th step.

This Saturday, a win by the Bills would help our SOV. The Panthers-Packers game doesn't affect either team's SOV; the Vikings have a win against both while we beat neither. MIN already got their guaranteed point regardless of the outcome.


Doesn't anyone use this anymore?
http://www.espn.com/nfl/playoffs/machine

Cards can get the third seed with some help.

I do use the Playoff Machine to check my math. Mathematically, we could still be as high as the 2-seed. Interestingly, if you set the games by "Win %," give the Cardinals PHI (with losses to SF/LAR), give the Vikings CHI/NO (with loss to DET), to simulate the SOV-scenario, then the SOV is within ONE game. Flip the BUF/DEN or HOU/IND game (seemingly random AFC games, but important to the SOV), and the Cardinals drop out. Flip Giants-Browns, and we're back in.

The next tie-breaker step is strength-of-schedule (SOS), which is apparently also very tight. Though the CRL/GB game Saturday doesn't matter in terms of SOV, a win by Carolina is marginally better for us, in the SOS step (as we played them but didn't play GB).
 

DwMi

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Don't overlook Chicago, if they beat Minnesota, then they play Jacksonville and then Green Bay who will have the #1 seed wrapped up and will be resting players.

This puts the Bears at 9-7 and they have tie breaker over the Cardinals.
 
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TheCardinal

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Don't overlook Chicago, if they beat Minnesota, then they play Jacksonville and then Green Bay who will have the #1 seed wrapped up and will be resting players.

This puts the Bears at 9-7 and they have tie breaker over the Cardinals.

Indeed! That’s why I agree with what others have suggested that a Vikings win over Chicago is preferable. The NY Times playoff simulator also gives us a slightly better chance of making the playoffs with a Vikings win over Chicago than the other way around. A tie would be best.

For the above SOV tie-breaker at 8-8 to come into play, it would require a Minnesota win over Chicago (and New Orleans) effectively eliminating Chicago since they’d have their eighth loss and couldn’t jump the Vikings in any divisional tie-breaker.
 
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TheCardinal

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The Cardinals can clinch a playoff berth in Week 16 with two wins, plus either a loss by the MIN/CHI winner or two losses by TB.

The Cardinals can be eliminated from playoff contention in Week 16 with two losses, two wins by CHI, and one win by TB. If it’s MIN with two wins instead of CHI, we’d still be alive as long as SOV remains within reach.
 
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TheCardinal

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Bills beat Broncos. Denver mathematically eliminated from playoff contention.

MIN's victims have 50 wins (forced outcomes included).
ARI's victims now have 44 wins, PLUS either 4.5 (PHI), 5 (SF), OR 9 (LAR) depending on who we beat for our 8th win.

ARI gets a "point" for
(wk15) NYJ over LAR
(15) BUF over DEN +1 for ARI, up to 44
(15) NYG over CLE
(16) SF over ARI
(16) WSH over CRL
(16) NYJ over CLE
(16) DAL over PHI
(16) SEA over LAR
(16) BUF over NE
(16) NYG over BAL
(17) WSH over PHI
(17) NYJ over NE
(17) BUF over MIA
The SF/DAL, WSH/SEA, SF/SEA, NYG/DAL games already gave us points, included in the 44.
If we only beat PHI: guaranteed points from PHI/DAL (wk16), and PHI/WSH (17)
If we only beat SF again: can get additional points for SF over DAL (15), SF over SEA (17)
If we only beat LAR: guaranteed points from LAR/NYJ (15), and LAR/SEA (16)

MIN gets a "point" for
(15) HOU over IND
(15) DET over TEN
(15) JAX over BAL
(15) NO over KC
(16) HOU over CIN
(16) GB over TEN
(16) DET over TB
(16) CRL over WSH
(16) CHI over JAX
(17) HOU over TEN
(17) CRL over NO
(17) JAX over IND
(17) CHI over GB
(17) NO over CRL
The CRL/GB, DET/MIN games already gave them points, included in the 50. Since they would've beaten CHI twice, the original points from CHI/JAX and CHI/GB are already included in the 50, but can get a second point with CHI wins as listed above.
 
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TheCardinal

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Green Bay beats Carolina. Thus, the Panthers join the Falcons on the NFC elimination trash heap and opens up one more pathway for the Cardinals to get in at 7-9, if we are entertaining such a fantasy.

However, the outcome makes it more likely that GB will be able to rest their starters in Week 17 — bad news should we need their help over CHI. Also, it gives MIN a slight bump in their SOS tie-breaker but doesn’t change the SOV tie-breaker as they already got their point as a forced-outcome having beaten both teams.
 
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TheCardinal

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I think it’s safe to call the BAL-JAX game. Denies MIN a point in SOV.
 
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TheCardinal

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Does the TN Detroit game have any effect with TN looking to take the W as well?
Yes, a TEN win would deny MIN another point. The IND win also denied them one.
However, if the Vikings don’t come back to win, this particular scenario goes away.
 
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TheCardinal

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As before, win out and go 10-6, and we’re in the playoffs. We cannot win the NFC West.

Split the last two and go 9-7, then the Cardinals would need ONE of the following:

Bears lose 1 OR
Bucs lose 2 OR
Rams lose 2

The Cardinals cannot be eliminated next week. The Cardinals can clinch a playoff berth next week with a win PLUS Chicago loss (to Jacksonville).

More scenarios at 8-8 to come later...
 
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