LA Rams can lock in a playoff spot with win or tie with Jets
By Bret Stuter
The LA Rams can lock up a spot in the NFL Playoffs with either a tie or win over the winless Jets
The LA Rams are 9-4, and are hosting the winless New York Jets this weekend. Of course, many fear this game as one the Rams may lose by not taking it serious enough. After all the Rams have lost four games so far this season, and on paper the Rams had a chance to win each of them. And so, many have learned a healthy respect for any opponent.
Still, this weekend has the characteristics of a trap-game. The Rams face a familiar opponent in a crucial game the following week. The Rams are heavily favored against a struggling team this week. And finally, unless the New Orleans Saints and or Green Bay Packers go into a tailspin to end the season, this game has little meaning for the Rams in the big picture.
Win and in
But suddenly it does. In fact, the key to the Rams playoffs is in the hands of the Jets game. Win and they are in. In fact, just tying with the Jets will get the Rams into post-season. According to odds-makers, that is likely to happen. You see, the Rams opened as 16.5 point favorites in this one, and the line is creeping in favor of the Rams. Some odds have the Rams as favored as 17.5 points in this one. The Rams can even lose this one and clinch a playoff berth with a tie between the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears.
But what of the other NFL playoff berths that can be locked in this weekend? Well the Seattle Seahawks can clinch a playoff berth with a win OR a tie between the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears. That also holds true for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who can clinch a playoff berth with a win AND a tie between the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears.
Rest of the playoff picture
The Green Bay Packers have already clinched the NFC North now, and are merely playing for seeding. The New Orleans Saints have clinched a playoff berth and can clinch the NFC South division title if they win against the Kansas City Chiefs or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers lose to the Atlanta Falcons.
Of course, The LA Rams would love nothing better than to witness both the Packers and Saints to lose. The Rams still have a remote chance to earn a higher seed in the NFL, but would need to win out. Then they would need both the Packers and Saints to lose two of their remaining three games. The Packers face the Carolina Panthers, the Tennessee Titans, and the Chicago Bears so that is possible. The Saints face the Kansas City Chiefs, the Minnesota Vikings, and Carolina Panthers. That holds a possibility as well.
There are just as many AFC scenarios, but right now it appears that all roads lead through the Kansas City Chiefs. I’d love to see the Rams face the Chiefs in this year’s Super Bowl. But for that to happen, the Rams need to get there.