Yardbarker Horiz

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Playoffs Watch: Week 9

With a tough 21-27 loss to the Atlanta Falcons last Sunday, the Buccaneers slide down the playoff ladder just slightly.

The chart below is a snapshot of "if the season ended today".  The (+) means the Buccaneers would win the tiebreaker if Tampa Bay finishes with the same record (because of a head-to-head win).  A (-) means the Buccaneers would lose the same tiebreaker scenario.  Tampa Bay has played five NFC games so far this season (conference games are important!).

Remember that division winners, regardless of record, make the playoffs. Here is how the NFC breaks down as of today:

Division Winners With First Round Bye
6-2 (East) New York Giants
6-2 (South) Atlanta Falcons (-)

Division Winners With First Round Home Game
6-3 (North) Green Bay Packers
4-4 (West) St. Louis Rams (+)

Wildcards
6-3 (South) New Orleans Saints (-)
5-3 (East) Philadelphia Eagles

Outside Looking In
5-3 (South) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
5-3 (North) Chicago Bears
4-4 (East) Washington Redskins
4-4 (West) Seattle Seahawks
3-5 (North) Minnesota Vikings
3-5 (West) Arizona Cardinals (+)
2-6 (North) Detroit Lions
2-6 (West) San Francisco 49ers
1-7 (South) Carolina Panthers (+)
1-7 (East) Dallas Cowboys

Tampa Bay is now the top team on the outside looking in at the midpoint of the 2010 season.  While much improved over last year, the Buccaneers find themselves needing help to get back into a playoff slot.  Being tied with Chicago and Philadelphia, with Washington and Seattle right behind, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers cannot afford a loss to a team they should beat.

The Buccaneers remaining schedule contains one game each against Atlanta, Seattle, New Orleans, Washington, Detroit, San Francisco.  From the chart you can see that both wildcard teams could easily come from the NFC South this season.

So much to consider, but first and foremost the Buccaneers need to get back on a winning streak!

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