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Wildcard Wednesday: Baltimore Ravens Own Sixth Seed, but Still Plenty of Contenders

December 4th, 2013 at 7:51 AM
By Josh Michael

Week 13 produced a much clearer AFC Wildcard picture with the Baltimore Ravens emerging from the week as the current holders of the sixth and final playoff spot in the conference.

'Jameel McClain' photo (c) 2009, Keith Allison - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Baltimore currently holds the final wildcard spot at 6-6, but the Miami Dolphins also sit at 6-6 and lose the tiebreaker with the Ravens due to Miami losing to Baltimore earlier in the season.

There may only be two teams tied for the final wildcard spot right now, but there are four teams within one game at 5-7 and three more within two games with still four games remaining. Although their chances are as close to zero as it gets without being zero itself, the 3-9 Jacksonville Jaguars are three games back and not eliminated from contention.

Six teams entered week 13 in a tie for the final wildcard spot, but thanks to the Ravens defeating the Steelers, Dolphins beating the Jets, and loses by both the Chargers and Titans (to division leaders), only two emerged victorious. Among those teams that lost, the Jets appear to be the ones most likely to drift away into the night as they benched Geno Smith for the second half of that game and cannot get anything going on offense, despite having one of the best defense's in the league.

There is only one game putting two of the six teams within one game of the final wildcard spot against each other as the Steelers will host the Dolphins Sunday afternoon.

Baltimore is in a situation that is pretty dangerous in that they will be playing a team at home in the Vikings that they are supposed to win. The Ravens have a golden opportunity to pad their lead and get one win closer to securing their sixth straight playoff appearance.

Week 14 should bring a little more clarity to the AFC Wildcard race with the possibility of multiple teams essentially eliminated from contention.

AFC Wildcard Standings
AFC WildcardWLGB
Chiefs93+3
Ravens66-
Dolphins66-
Titans571
Steelers571
Chargers571
Jets571
Raiders482
Browns482
Bills482

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Tags: AFC Wildcard, Baltimore, Baltimore Ravens, Football, NFL, Steelers

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