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Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Black and Blue all over: Tiebreakers

By Kevin Seifert
ESPN.com

Some parts of the NFC North were hoping that the sun would rise Tuesday morning with Minnesota and New Orleans tied for the best record in the NFC. Alas, the Saints maintained their one-game advantage over the Vikings with a resounding victory over New England on "Monday Night Football."

But for those of you who have been asking, there are a set of 11 tiebreakers that would apply if the teams finish with the same regular-season record. To determine who gets home-field advantage throughout the playoffs:

1. Head-to-head, if applicable.
2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference.
3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games, minimum of four.
4. Strength of victory.
5. Strength of schedule.
6. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed.
7. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed.
8. Best net points in conference games.
9. Best net points in all games.
10. Best net touchdowns in all games.
11. Coin toss.

Obviously, the top tiebreaker won’t apply because the teams won’t play during the regular season. So keep this post in your back pocket as the season continues. Onward…