Keep an eye on the AFC wild-card race

November, 9, 2009
11/09/09
7:34
AM ET
For all you New York Jets fans who took glee in watching San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers execute that thrilling drive to beat the New York Giants in the closing moments Sunday, your rooting interests were misplaced.

That victory could haunt your Jets when it comes to making the playoffs.

Some might deem it too early to start looking at the playoff picture, with only half of the season played. But I thought it would be a good time to let you know which teams you should be cheering against down the homestretch.

Below are the AFC standings heading into Monday night's game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Denver Broncos. They are listed by overall record (with division and conference records).

None of the teams that are tied has played the other head-to-head, which is the first tiebreaker, with division record the second tiebreaker. Next is record against common opponents. Conference record comes fourth.

In the Jets' case, their best shot to make the playoffs will be as one of the two wild cards. But don't just look at the records as we move through the season. The real devil is the number of teams you must leapfrog to get into sixth place.

So, root for the Broncos, Jets fans. You don't want another potential wild-card team to get cozy up there.
  1. Indianapolis Colts 8-0 (3-0, 4-0)
  2. Denver Broncos 6-1 (2-0, 5-1)
  3. Cincinnati Bengals 6-2 (4-0, 4-2)
  4. New England Patriots 6-2 (2-1, 4-2)
  5. Pittsburgh Steelers 5-2 (1-1, 3-1)
  6. San Diego Chargers 5-3 (3-1, 4-3)
  7. Houston Texans 5-3 (1-2, 4-3)
  8. Jacksonville Jaguars 4-4 (2-2, 3-2)
  9. Baltimore Ravens 4-4 (1-2, 4-3)
  10. New York Jets 4-4 (1-3, 4-3)
  11. Miami Dolphins 3-5 (3-1, 3-3)
  12. Buffalo Bills 3-5 (2-2, 1-4)

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