NY Jets: The many scenarios surrounding their playoff hopes


There are many scenarios for the NY Jets to earn a spot in the NFL Playoffs. Make no mistake about it, the Jets must win out the remainder of their games this season.

After a win over the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday night, the Jets sit at 9-5 yet still out of the playoff picture because both the Chiefs and Steelers hold tiebreakers over them. However, the Broncos’ loss over Pittsburgh brings them to 10-4 on the year and gives Kansas City a chance to take the division. The 11-3 Bengals clinched Sunday with their win over the 49ers, but they can still lose the division to the Steelers. There are a lot of scenarios in these final two weeks that can sneak the Jets into the postseason, so let’s break them all down for you.

For Kansas City to be the odd team out

Jets: wins vs. NE & at BUF to get to 11-5

Steelers: wins at BAL & CLE to get to 11-5

Broncos: win vs. CIN or SD to get to 11-5

Chiefs: loss vs. CLE or OAK to fall to 10-6

With a loss to the Browns being very unlikely, the only chance New York has in this scenario is if the Chiefs manage to lose their season finale against Oakland. Given the fact that the Raiders will do all they can to spoil their division rival’s playoff hopes, Kansas City isn’t a lock just yet. However, they do control their own destiny by winning their final two games due to their 8-2 record against AFC opponents. They also hold a tiebreaker over Pittsburgh because of their victory over them in Week 7, hence why the Steelers must win out to have the edge over them.

For Pittsburgh to be the odd team out

Jets: wins vs. NE & at BUF to get to 11-5

Broncos: win vs. CIN or SD to get to 11-5

Chiefs: win vs. CLE or OAK to get to 10-6

Steelers: loss at BAL or CLE to fall to 10-6

Since the Steelers own a tiebreaker over the Broncos based on Sunday’s contest, Denver must win one of their final two games even if Pittsburgh falls to Baltimore or Cleveland. The Chiefs hold the tiebreaker over Pittsburgh, so all they’d need is one win if Pittsburgh loses one of their final two. The Jets would still lose the tiebreaker to the Steelers if both finish with the same record due to win percentage in common games. Therefore, New York has to win both games and hope the Steelers lose once to sneak in over them.

For Denver to be the odd team out

Jets: wins vs. NE & at BUF to get to 11-5

Steelers: wins at BAL & CLE to get to 11-5

Chiefs: wins vs. CLE & OAK to get to 11-5

Broncos: loss to CIN or SD to fall to 11-5

If all three teams trailing the Broncos were to win out, Denver would be on the couch in January. The Jets would have the better conference record, the Chiefs would have the better divisional record, and the Steelers would have the head-to-head tiebreaker. All three can still get in over the Broncos at 10-6 if Denver loses both of their last two as well. Although, that is very unlikely given the fact that both games are at home and one is against a dismal Chargers team.

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Overall, Gang Green will have their chance to make the playoffs if a bit falls their way, but winning out has now become a must.