Originally posted by Psycho PenguinI'm assuming I should be rooting for Miami over Jacksonville this weekend as a Ravens fan, especially since Miami's last 3 games after that are against the Texans, Titans, and Steelers.
Assuming Denver or San Diego takes one wild card spot, Baltimore needs to finish a game ahead of Jacksonville in order to make the playoffs (because Jacksonville has the better conference record). So if Baltimore goes 4-0 in remaining games, you need Jacksonville to go 2-2.
Whereas Baltimore controls their own destiny with Miami. If Baltimore goes 4-0 in remaining games, they finish 3-2 in common games with Miami, while 4 wins from Miami will still leave them at 2-3 in common games. If the two teams don't go undefeated, a lot depends on what they each do against Pittsburgh. A Baltimore loss to Pittsburgh and a Miami win over Pittsburgh puts them both at 2-3 in common games. The next tiebreaker is Strength of Victory, which is too close to call.
New York is in the mix as well, but they need to finish a game ahead of both Miami and Jacksonville to have any shot. They probably need to finish at 10-6 while Miami, Jacksonville, and Baltimore all finish at 9-7 or lower in order to get in.
So I would say yes, root against Jacksonville in every remaining game. Root against Miami in every game except the one against Jacksonville (yes, that includes rooting for Pittsburgh vs. Miami). And obviously root for Baltimore to win their games as well.
'Nother different format today, as the column will be much shorter and won't necessarily cover every game. It'll be heavier on the major goings-on of the week, and I'll try to express a few opinions without sounding like a total moron.