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Here’s how Dolphins slim playoff hope can stay alive this weekend

Roy Cummings

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Photo by Icon Sportswire

The late great Yogi Berra is still right all these many years later that it truly “ain’t over until it’s over.” And right now, for the Dolphins, it ain’t over.

At 6-8 their playoff hopes are on life support, but they are still alive headed into this weekend.

As you would expect, coach Adam Gase answered the way that a coach should, when asked about his team’s postseason chances Wednesday afternoon, “We’re still in this season….Win this one (in Kansas City) and go from there and see what happens.”

The question is: will winning that one game Sunday still matter?

So, buckle up get out your pencil with an eraser and here we go with what keeps the Dolphins alive for this week and gives them hope that next week they can get in on a tiebreaker at 8-8 for an AFC Wildard.

First, the Ravens did no favors for the Dolphins on Saturday, as they defeated the Colts 23-16. That win means the Ravens are 9-6 and control their own destiny to defeat the Bengals at home next week and clinch a Wildcard Spot. Obviously, the Dolphins will not be able to tie the Ravens, now.

So, onto Sunday, and Miami must help themselves by beating Kansas City early Sunday afternoon, because a ninth loss will eliminate them. The Chiefs also have to win this game, as they are trying to win the AFC West and make the playoffs. Also, by beating K.C., Miami would own a potential head to head tiebreaker over the Chiefs, if needed, for the Wildcard after next weekend.

The next two things that need to happen also on Sunday are: the Patriots winning their rematch with the Bills in New England and the Rams defeating Tennessee in Nashville.

Neither of those are too far-fetched. The Pats have to keep winning to be the #1 seed in the AFC and have home-field advantage. So their motives are high.

The Rams are coming to Tennessee, and they have to keep winning to not only win the West and guarantee a home playoff game, but they are battling with the Saints and the Vikings for the #2 seed in the NFC playoffs and a bye.

Those losses would make the Bills and the Titans 8-7 headed into the final weekend.

Still with us?

Then, on Monday night the Eagles, who also need to keep winning for #1 seed status in the NFC playoffs host the Raiders. Miami, would still need at least more Oakland loss to help them headed into the final weekend of the season. The Raiders have the head to head win over Miami last month.

So the bottom line is the Dolphins need a victory in K.C., but also help in four other games.

Not dead, but in serious jeopardy.

Then again, the NFL is crazy with upsets, and as we have laid out above, if they take care of business against the Chiefs, everything else is realistic to fall into place for Gase and the Dolphins this weekend.

Now, you have to let it play out.

Roy Cummings is a native of Chicago, Illinois who grew up in the suburb of Lombard. He and his family later moved to Lakeland, Florida, where Roy attended high school at Kathleen High. He graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communications in 1983 and immediately went to work for the Tampa Tribune. After five years working in a Polk County bureau covering everything from high school sports to college football to the Orlando Magic of the NBA, Roy moved back to Tampa and became the Tribune's first beat writer for the Tampa Bay Lightning, covering the team from its inception through the first eight years on the ice. He was then moved to the Buccaneers beat, where he stayed until the paper was folded in May, 2016. A two-time Florida Sports Writer of the Year, Roy has extensive experience covering all Tampa professional sports teams, including the Tampa Bay Rays.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. B Wimmer

    December 21, 2017 at 10:30 am

    Miami doesn’t ‘have to’ have IND beat BAL to stay alive although that would be a huge boon for them. If the other more likely things happen (NE over BUF, LAR over TEN, PHI over OAK) then Miami would need to beat BUF and have JAX over TEN and -either- DEN over KC -or- OAK over LAC. To me, that’s the most realistic shot they have since it eliminates any upsets with the exception of Miami’s two games. My thinking is, if the Fins go about it like they control their own destiny (by winning out), the other things very well may fall into place. But they hafta get W’s first and foremost.

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