Bengals Control Own Destiny

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Now that the AFC is down to the last week of the regular season the playoff picture got much more simple for the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals beat (or tie) the Ravens on New Years day and they are in. It might be a simple scenario, but it will not be as simple of a task as the Ravens are among the best teams in the NFL. The other teams still in the hunt for an AFC wildcard spot (Raiders, Jets, & Titans) need a Bengals loss and a lot of other help:

OAKLAND RAIDERS
Oakland clinches AFC West Division:
1) OAK win + DEN loss or tie
2) OAK tie + DEN loss
Oakland clinches a wild card spot:
1) OAK win + CIN loss + TEN loss or tie
2) OAK win + CIN loss + NYJ win

NEW YORK JETS
NY Jets clinch a wild card spot:
1) NYJ win + CIN loss + TEN loss or tie + OAK loss or tie
2) NYJ win + CIN loss + TEN loss or tie + DEN loss or tie

TENNESSEE TITANS
Tennessee clinches a wild card spot:
1) TEN win + CIN loss + NYJ win + OAK loss or tie
2) TEN win + CIN loss + NYJ win + DEN loss or tie
3) TEN win + CIN loss + NYJ loss or tie + OAK win + DEN win

Although Cincinnati is craving a win this week, advancing to the playoffs as a wildcard could be as easy as these two scenarios without winning against the Ravens:

  • NYJ loss or tie + OAK loss or tie
  • NYJ loss or tie + DEN loss or tie

If you need anything else to root for as a Bengals fan, you could pull for an Oakland win and a Denver loss in hopes that the Raiders would end up in the AFC championship game. In which case, the 2013 draft pick the Bengals received from the Raiders in the Palmer trade would turn into a first-round pick.

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Tags: AFC Playoffs AFC Wild Card Playoff Scenarios

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