2012 NFL Playoff Predictions from the Phinsider Community

After tasting the playoffs for the first time in franchise history, the Houston Texans and their fans will be looking for more in 2012.

Over the past 10-days or so, the Phinsider Community has predicted the 2012 NFL Playoffs. We started by looking at the AFC and NFC playoff teams from last year. Then, using the average 50% turnover from year to year that seems to have become standard for the NFL postseason, we eliminated the six teams, three per conference, that made the tournament last year.

After that, we took a poll of the 10 remaining teams from each conference (3 in the playoffs, 3 out of the playoffs, and 10 left to give us the 16 teams per conference) to see which teams would fill the holes in the playoff picture.

Now, it's time to look at the 2012 NFL Playoffs, as predicted by the Phinsider Community in May.

First up, the AFC. In 2011, the playoff picture looked like:

  1. New England Patriots
  2. Baltimore Ravens
  3. Houston Texans
  4. Denver Broncos
  5. Pittsburgh Steelers
  6. Cincinnati Bengals

After the voting, the Phinsider Community removed the Bengals, Broncos, and Steelers from the playoffs. Leaving the following postseason picture (I am assuming the teams from last year's playoffs win their respective divisions, just to ensure we have the right combination of six teams in each conference):

  • AFC East: New England Patriots
  • AFC North: Baltimore Ravens
  • AFC South: Houston Texans
  • AFC West: Vacant
  • Wildcards: Vacant

With that in mind, we now turn to the teams we think will make it into the playoffs at the end of the 2012 season. According to our vote, the AFC West Crown will go to the San Diego Chargers, while the Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills will both come out of the AFC East to claim wild card slots.

As for the NFC, the 2011 playoffs looked like:

  • Green Bay Packers
  • San Francisco 49ers
  • New Orleans Saints
  • New York Giants
  • Atlanta Falcons
  • Detroit Lions
  • Your votes then removed the Saints, Falcons, and Lions from the postseason tournament, leaving:

    • NFC East: New York Giants
    • NFC North: Green Bay Packers
    • NFC South: Vacant
    • NFC West: San Francisco 49ers
    • Wildcards: Vacant

    Taking a look at the NFC votes, we find the Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles filling the two Wildcard positions. The Dallas Cowboys actually received the next highest vote total, but have to be skipped for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to make it into the vacant NFC South position. The Buccaneers beat out the Carolina Panthers for the position by one vote.

    With that, the 2012 Phinsider Community playoff picture is complete, predicting the NFL playoffs in May:

    AFC Division NFC
    New England Patriots East New York Giants
    Baltimore Ravens North Green Bay Packers
    Houston Texans South Tampa Bay Buccaneers
    San Diego Chargers West San Francisco 49ers
    Miami Dolphins Wildcard 1 Philadelphia Eagles
    Buffalo Bills Wildcard 2 Chicago Bears

    With this way too early look at the NFL playoffs, how do you think we did? Was the Miami homerism the only reason the Dolphins made it, or do they honestly have a chance at the playoffs this year? Could the AFC East really get three teams into the postseason? Will the Buccaneers top the Panthers in the NFC South - and will the Saints and Falcons both fall behind either one of those teams? Let us know below in the comments.

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