The NFL’s Week 10 schedule starts tonight with an AFC North contest. Each week, we take a look at the NFL’s slate of games, trying to find what results best help the Miami Dolphins in the continuation of their unlikely quest for the Playoffs this year. Sitting at 4-4 on the season, Miami is in seventh in the AFC, putting them one game out of the Wildcard position.
Below, you will find all of the games featuring AFC teams (with the AFC teams denoted by their records), as well as who to root for to best help the Dolphins.
Cleveland Browns (0-9) at Baltimore Ravens (4-4)
This one is actually a little more difficult than it appears at first. The Ravens are currently leading their division, but at only 4-4, it is not like they are running away with that lead. Who to root for in this game is dependent on who you think will win the AFC North. I do not think it will be the Ravens, so a loss is a good thing in the Wildcard hunt. Plus, the Browns getting at least one win would be nice. Root for: Browns.
Houston Texans (5-3) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-6)
This feels a little like the Browns at Ravens, with the last place team in a division facing the first place team and that top team not exactly dominating their way through the season. At this point, however, the Texans appear to be in the best position to win the division, so a win for them keep them out of the Wildcard discussion. Root for: Texans.
Denver Broncos (6-3) at New Orleans Saints
The AFC West is going to be the problem child for the Dolphins earning a Wildcard berth this year, with the top three times all at least three games over .500. Some losses need to start happening for at least two of those three clubs, and the Broncos happen to be playing an NFC team this week, which means the rooting guide falls back to its first rule: NFC vs. AFC is almost always root for the NFC. Root for: Saints.
Los Angeles Rams at New York Jets (3-6)
There is a way to look at this and say the NFC vs. AFC rule should be broken (tie breakers and strength of schedule/victory considerations), but the Jets are still too close to the Dolphins in the standings to want to see them pick up this win. Plus, they are the Jets. Root for: Rams.
Kansas City Chiefs (6-2) at Carolina Panthers
The second AFC West team to show up on the schedule this week is again not the division leader and is playing an NFC team. Re-read the Broncos at Saints game for more. Root for: Panthers.
Green Bay Packers at Tennessee Titans (4-5)
The Titans are just half-a-game behind the Dolphins in the AFC, and hold the head-to-head tie-break with Miami. That means, a Titans loss is a very good thing for the Dolphins, even before the NFC vs. AFC consideration. Root for: Packers.
Miami Dolphins (4-4) at San Diego Chargers (4-5)
This is a guide for whom to root to help the Dolphins. That means, the Dolphins are the obvious choice here. Add in that a win keeps the Dolphins’ winning streak alive, pushes them over .500 for the first time this year, and just outside the Playoff seeding, and a Miami win is a good thing. A Chargers loss, pushing them further down in the Wildcard race, is a good thing as well. Root for: Dolphins
Dallas Cowboys at Pittsburgh Steelers (4-4)
This one breaks the NFC vs. AFC rule, because someone has to win the AFC North, and since earlier I said I do not think that will be the Ravens, I have to give the division to someone, and that will be the Steelers. As such, seeing them rack up some wins will be important. Root for: Steelers.
Seattle Seahawks at New England Patriots (7-1)
This game could end up in the games not considered category and it would be fine. The Dolphins lost to the Seahawks, so there is no strength of victory consideration here. The Patriots are running away with the division, but since it is an NFC vs. AFC game, we will use the standard rule. Root for: Seahawks.
Cincinnati Bengals (3-4-1) at New York Giants
The Steelers winning the AFC North means the Bengals join the Ravens at the teams in that division needing to los to get out of the Wildcard picture. Plus, NFC vs. AFC comes in to play again. Root for: Giants.
Not considered (NFC vs. NFC)
Atlanta Falcons at Philadelphia Eagles
Chicago Bears at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Minnesota Vikings at Washington Redskins
San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals