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Is the Wild-Card an Option?

Conventional wisdom in ninerland says its the division or bust, but take a look at the wild card contenders in the conference (excluded Arizona because we'll either be competing for a wild card slot or be division champs):

SF
DAL
GB
PHI
ATL
CHI

Here's a look at the remaining "tough" games for our wild card opponents:

- GB still has to play MIN, DAL, SF, BAL, @CHI, @PIT, @ARI.
- ATL still has to play NO x 2, NYG, PHI, NYJ
- PHI has murderers' row in the 2nd half: the NYG x 2, DAL x 2, @SD, @CHI, @ATL, SF, and DEN. With that schedule, I don't see how philly makes the playoffs.
- DAL has to play PHI x 2, @GB, @NYG, SD, @NO, @WAS (I put the WAS game on there because they alwys play tough, regardless of talent levels, when playing each other)
- CHI has to play MIN x 2, ARI, @SF, PHI, GB, @BAL
- SF has to play @IND, CHI, @GB, ARI, @ PHI

We have the least number of difficult games remaining, along with Atlanta. But Atlanta has a 1.5 game lead over us. They could lose 4 out of those 6 games and still be 10-6.

Green Bay and Dallas need to win 3 out of 7 games to go 10-6.

Philly needs to win 6 of their 9 brutal games to go 10-6.

Chicago needs to win 4 of those 7 to go 10-6.

We need to win 2 out of 5 to go 10-6.

Analysis:

- I don't see how Atlanta misses the playoffs. They need to lose at least 4 of those games AND the Dallas tiebreaker needs to come into play for them to miss.

- Philly's schedule is just too difficult for them to win 6 of those 9 games.

- Chicago looks like a team that will not be competitive outside of their rivalry games. Lovie WILL get fired.

- Dallas has 5 of its 7 tough games on the road. If they beat Philly and San Diego at home, then avoid a loss in Washington, they're at 10 wins.

- The team that concerns me the most is Green Bay. The only need to win 3 of their 4 tough home games to get to 10-6. They could also drop 2 at home and still go 10-6 by beating Chicago or Arizona on the road (if they beat ARI, we may win the DID). The only positive for us is that Green Bay mateches up poorly against Minnesota, Dallas, Baltimore, and Pit. Weo if we beat them in Green bay, they could be done.

- Now to us. Highly unlikely we beat Indy. The Arizona and the Green Bay games are the two must-must wins. We've gotta beat ARI to win the division and we need to avoid losing a tie-breaker to Green Bay. That could put us at 10-6 and in position to win the division if Arizona has less than 11 wins, or to win the wild card unless (a) green bay wins 4 out of their 7 or (b) dallas slips into the playoffs.
[ Edited by nickbradley on Oct 29, 2009 at 2:05 PM ]
I'm not following your logic... To be 10-6 we would have to only lose 2 games against the teams you mentioned:

@IND, CHI, @GB, ARI, @ PHI

Indy will be an extremely tough game, so that leaves 1 loss against:
CHI, @GB, ARI, @ PHI

....And thats not even mentioning Seattle at their home! I hope so, but HIGHLY unlikely.
Originally posted by Norcal9erfan:
I'm not following your logic... To be 10-6 we would have to only lose 2 games against the teams you mentioned:

@IND, CHI, @GB, ARI, @ PHI

Indy will be an extremely tough game, so that leaves 1 loss against:
CHI, @GB, ARI, @ PHI

....And thats not even mentioning Seattle at their home! I hope so, but HIGHLY unlikely.

I picked out the "tough games" for each team. I'm assuming none of the teams stumble against garbage teams.
  • Paul
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 6,726
I'd say no, so far we can't win outside the division and the NFC seems to be a bit stronger than it's been in the past 4-6 years. We need the division
anything with a winning record in it is fine by me....... especially with the o-line we have now.
i think 10-6 we are in
No, I don't think so. We either win the NFC West or stay home. Too many other teams that will find a way in.
Originally posted by Icedawg316:
I'd say no, so far we can't win outside the division and the NFC seems to be a bit stronger than it's been in the past 4-6 years. We need the division

1. We can win out at home -- none of our remaining home games are difficult outside of the arizona game: CHI, TEN, JAX, ARI, DET). That puts us at 8 wins.

Our remaining road games are at IND, GB, PHI, SEA, STL. We need to win two of those to get to 10 wins

Lose to Arizona @ home and we need to win 3 of our 5 road games to get to 10-6...we need to be @ 10-6 to get a wild-card slot, in my opinion. A realistic wild-card scenario would be:

1. win 4 out of 5 at home (L to ARI), Beat SEA, STL, and GB OR PHI on the road. Very rare that a 10-win NFC team misses the playoffs.
  • B650
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 4,205
You can't predict what's going to happen. You can say the Falcons have 3 or 4 tough games and give them 2 wins out of those, but you never know. What if Matt Ryan gets hurt? It's too early to be making predictions.

All the playoff contenders have harder schedules than us, so anything is possible.

If we go 13-3, we'll be in the playoffs.
Originally posted by nvninerfan1:
No, I don't think so. We either win the NFC West or stay home. Too many other teams that will find a way in.

Will all home games + win all division games = 10 wins!
Originally posted by B650:
You can't predict what's going to happen. You can say the Falcons have 3 or 4 tough games and give them 2 wins out of those, but you never know. What if Matt Ryan gets hurt? It's too early to be making predictions.

All the playoff contenders have harder schedules than us, so anything is possible.

If we go 13-3, we'll be in the playoffs.

You always have to make some assumptions when doing analysis. You have to assume quality teams beat Detroit and and the Rams, for example...assume superstars don't get hurt.
i think the only way we get into the playoffs is with the NFC west title. Wildcard will go to someone in the NFC east for sure. The other to the Falcons, packers or bears.

So yea, I wouldn't hold my breath for a playoff birth.
[ Edited by SybErkRimInAL on Oct 29, 2009 at 2:50 PM ]
  • B650
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 4,205
Originally posted by nickbradley:
Originally posted by B650:
You can't predict what's going to happen. You can say the Falcons have 3 or 4 tough games and give them 2 wins out of those, but you never know. What if Matt Ryan gets hurt? It's too early to be making predictions.

All the playoff contenders have harder schedules than us, so anything is possible.

If we go 13-3, we'll be in the playoffs.

You always have to make some assumptions when doing analysis. You have to assume quality teams beat Detroit and and the Rams, for example...assume superstars don't get hurt.

True, but we've lost 3 out of 4 now, going on 4 out of 5. I don't think we need to be worrying about what other teams are doing at this point. Maybe if we beat the Colts, I'll start taking a look at the schedule.

Right now only one thing is certain: if we go 13-3, we're in, and that's how the 49ers coaches and players are looking at it.
Originally posted by SybErkRimInAL:
i think the only way we get into the playoffs is with the NFC west title. Wildcard will go to someone in the NFC east for sure. The other to the Falcons, packers or bears.

So yea, I wouldn't hold my breath for a playoff birth.

Have you seen Philly's Schedule???
To have a chance wildcard, you need at least 10 wins.

If we get 11 wins, then our likelihood increases quite a bit.

Seeing as though how, 10 and 11 wins will likely win the division, it is more likely that we win the division and get to the playoffs rather than get a wildcard.

-9fA