We are down to the last week of the regular season and the Jets have nothing to play for other than draft position and Rex’s job. Week 17 is filled with nothing but divisional match-ups so figuring out Strength Of Schedule (SOS) is easier. Because of this the Jets have to be within 4 games of any team to have a shot at passing them or be passed by them.
Here’s the current list of teams the Jets will have to deal with in any tiebreakers:
|9||TEN||6 – 9||121 – 119||@ Houston|
|10||NYG||6 – 9||124 – 114 – 2||Washington|
|11||BUF||6 – 9||125 – 115||@ NE|
|12||DET||7 – 8||107 – 129 – 4||@ Minnesota|
|13||PIT||7 – 8||112 – 126 – 2||Cleveland|
|14||NYJ||7 – 8||118 – 122||@ Miami|
|15||STL||7 – 8||133 – 107||@ Seattle|
|16||GB||7 – 7 – 1||108 – 130 – 2||@ Chicago|
|17||DAL||8 – 7||114 – 124 – 2||Philadelphia|
|18||BAL||8 – 7||114 – 124 – 2||@ Cincinnati|
|19||SD||8 – 7||120 – 120||Kansas City|
|21||MIA||8 – 7||124 – 116||NYJ|
|25||CHI||8 – 7||108 – 128 – 4||Green Bay|
The Dolphins and Bears at 21 and 25 are listed since both can drop outside the playoffs and can be involved if they lose.
As I said before the Jets can only pass or be passed by teams who are within 4 games, so quite a few teams have the tiebreaker already settled. The Giants, Bills, Lions, Steelers, Rams, Packers, Dolphins, Chargers and Bears cannot be passed by the Jets or pass the Jets. So that just leaves the Titans, Cowboys, and Ravens who could be involved.
Moving on to the scenarios the best the Jets can do is get the 9th pick in the draft and this is how it’s done:
- Jets lose
- Bills win
- Giants win
- Titans win
- Lions win
- Steelers win
This would give the Jets a slight edge in SOS with the Titans at 128-128 and the Jets at 127-128 with only the Broncos-Raiders game left to count in the Jets SOS. If the Raiders lose then the Jets beat the Titans on SOS and if the Raiders win then the Jets would win based on conference record 4-8 vs. the Titans 6-6.
The rest of the scenarios with a Jets loss are easy enough to explain as the Jets lose a pick as each of the above doesn’t happen basically if they go 6 for 6 then they get the 9th pick but if they only get 5 out of 6 then they would get the 10th pick, 4 out of 6 would get them the 11th pick, etc.
Alright we move on to the other scenario where the Jets can take the 18th pick of the draft if this complex scenario occurs:
- Jets win
- Rams lose
- Steelers lose
- Cowboys lose
- Ravens lose
- Titans or Raiders win
- Chargers win
If you noticed earlier I put the Chargers on the cannot pass list despite being within 4 games this is because if the above happens the Chargers would win on SOS by at least 3 games if they tie. So with this scenario the Jets fall short of the Dolphins and Chargers in SOS which cost them one spot since one of these two would be in the playoffs. The Steelers had to lose since the Jets would lose 2 spots rather than one . A Titans or Raiders win would give the Jets a narrow win in SOS over Baltimore by 1 game since both finished-based teams on their schedule play each other Texans(Ravens)-Titans(Jets) and Broncos(Ravens)-Raiders(Jets) so there is no leeway on this. A Chargers win would give them the playoff spot thus allowing the Jets to drop to 18th rather than 17th if the Charger lose. It doesn’t matter who wins the NFC North as the loser would have a worse SOS than the Jets.
As with the other one the Jets would go up a spot if each one doesn’t happen aside from the Ravens and the Titans/Raiders scenarios which are connected since if the Ravens win it won’t matter what the Titans and Raiders do and a Steelers win won’t mean much unless both the Ravens and Chargers lose since they won’t be in the playoffs and thus still lose to the Jets in SOS.