While the NFC didn't have any critical changes from last week, the AFC saw some big moves. Why Not Zoidberg? has taken over the #1 seed (and the $50 bonus) from JPP's Missing Fingers, although they both still hang on to first-round byes. Also, Vlad M's five-match winning streak has allowed him to grab the #6 seed, pushing Ethan C down in the grey.
All right -- there are a bunch of divisional matches this week, and all of them have potential playoff implications. Let's get to them:
We begin in the AFC East where Vlad M is on a huge tear. If we look back to Week 8, we'd find him at the bottom of the division, 2-5 after a four-match losing streak. Now he's won five-straight, and is just a half-step away from taking over the division lead if Mike C were to slip this week. Looking to prevent that from happening is Ethan C, who is trying to set himself up to take over the top spot for himself. With both of these players facing divisional opponents each of the final three weeks of the season, the AFC East is a wide-open race.
After losing her last three matches, it's pretty much do-or-die time for Yellow Jackets' playoff hopes. The AFC South is still a possibility, but StuB would have to do a lot of losing down the stretch. Basically, Yellow Jackets needs to win two or three matches, as long as StuB loses either two or three. Pulling up the caboose of the league, Horns' playoff chances are long gone, but there's always the satisfaction of playing spoiler, and grabbing Player of the Week is still on the table.
In the AFC North, Brenda's Bulldogs is hoping to get a win over I Will Win It All, while also rooting for JPP's Missing Fingers to get his third-straight loss. Brenda's Bulldogs is in control of her own playoff destiny -- as long as she keeps winning, the worst she'll do is be the #5 seed in the playoffs, but a division title is always the more satisfying way to go. If I Will Win It All wants to live up to his name, he's got a long road ahead. He'd need to win all three remaining matches, and would still need a ton of help. Still closing the season with four-in-a-row would be an impressive accomplishment.
Why Not Zoidberg? is very, very likely to win the AFC West, and can seal the deal at any time with a win. What would it take to stop that from happening? He'd have to lose all three remaining matches, and then Secretly Victorious would have to win all three of hers. If that were to happen, then they'd both be 10-6 overall, 4-2 in the division, 8-4 in the conference, and would have split their season series -- which would mean we'd have to go to the fourth tiebreaker: pick total. If that all fell together perfectly, then whichever one finished with the highest total number of correct picks for the season would be division champ! Secretly Victorious can begin her uphill climb here by getting back at Lyle Alzado for beating her in Week 5.
Another player one win away from a division title is NFC North leader Rabid Ferrets -- as long as the wheels don't completely come off down the stretch, the title is his. Looking to get that collapse underway is Pigskin Palookas, who would need to win the next three to take over the top spot. A loss here wouldn't mathematically eliminate Pigskin Palookas from Wild Card contention, but it would make for a very, very difficult final two weeks.
The final divisional match takes place in the NFC West where Evil Squad of Evil sits one win behind the division lead, as well as one win behind the two current Wild Card players. He's currently well-behind in tiebreakers, so every win is critical for him as we head down the stretch. Standing in his way is Fighting Sporks, who is used to battling Evil Squad Of Evil for the division title, but is going be making other plans for January, having been eliminated from playoff contention.
All right, that'll do it for the divisional previews. There are a couple other matches with big playoff implications -- Boardwalkers vs. Jeff B and Turf Toe vs. JPP's Missing Fingers the biggest among them.
Ok, time to get your picks in -- but before you do...
IMPORTANT NOTICE: As happens every year, the holidays bring about scheduling and deadline changes. For both this week and Week 16, there will be the usual Thursday deadline of 12 noon, and a deadline of 8:00 pm on Friday for your weekend picks. In both cases, these deadlines are going to be firm ones, so please make sure you get those picks in on time.
All right -- your pick submission page is all set, so please make sure you have them in on time. And if I can make a friendly recommendation, I'd suggest you get all your picks in by the Thursday deadline. You can always make changes before the Friday deadline if you like, but you give yourself a safety next in case life gets in the way. We saw one player fall out of a playoff spot because of defaulting last week, so make sure you've got your picks in ahead of the deadline. Have a great week everyone!
Check the meaningless pick chart, and make sure you have the rest of your picks in by Friday night at 8:00. Enjoy!
First off, we have two One-Hit Wonder Matches of the Week:
Yellow Jackets needs Arizona, while Horns would win along with New Orleans.
Hyena is counting on New England to give him a win, while Ignats's season is riding on Denver.
Then there is the match that was picked even closer -- our Monday Night Madness Match of the Week: With no differences on the board, JPP's Missing Fingers needs a MNF score total of 50 or under, while Turf Toe would get the win with a score of 51+.
And then, there's the rarest animal of them all. For only the second time in pool history two players picked all the games the same, picked the same pick total, and didn't answer a call to make changes (which we send out when there is a strong possibility of a tie). Check the results below to see how that shook out.
Ok, we have to run, so check the completed pick chart and enjoy the weekend. Good luck all!
Several matches can/will be settled in the afternoon session, so take a look at the updated pick chart and check back once they close out.
No matter tonight's result, we're going to have winners off of the Dallas/Tampa game, so check back late to see who nails down what.
Four matches left, basically coming down to tomorrow night's total score. Check back then to see who keeps hope alive!
In a week where most players put up big numbers (the average score was 12.5), the deciding factor for a lot of people was correcting picking an underdog. There were four winning teams that were avoided by the majority of the league, but there was one player who correctly hit on all four of those picks. That was what allowed StuB to easily cruise to Player of the Week with a near-perfect 15-of-16 performance.
Now, on the playoff picture front -- after last week, both Why Not Zoidberg? and Turf Toe had secured their postseason berths. With this week's action:
--Why Not Zoidberg? has improved his lot by locking up the AFC West title.
--StuB not only won Player of the Week, but has also secured the AFC South title.
--Rabid Ferrets has locked up the NFC North championship and has moved into the #2 seed in the conference.
--JPP's Missing Fingers and Brenda's Bulldogs are fighting neck-and-neck to see who be AFC North champ, but no matter who comes out on top, they both will be seeing postseason action.
That means we have six playoff spots spoken for, and six still up for grabs as we head into the final two weeks. To see how it's all looking you can check out the updated Standings, then see how the week shook out in the finalized pick chart and get a jump on your Week 16 pick submissions (PLEASE NOTE -- the bulk of games will be played on Saturday this week, so the deadline for TNF is Thursday at noon and the deadline for weekend games is Friday night at 8:00).
Have a great week everyone!