According to the math, even a Jaguar win on Sunday will only give them a 1 in 10 chance at making the postseason. It would definitely require a small miracle for the Jaguars to win and 4 of the 5 teams ahead of them to lose, but why shouldn't we believe that a miracle could be in the works for our team?
The Jaguars have been blessed by miracle after miracle just to be in the playoff race at 7-8. After three straight losses to close out December there are only two possibilities:
1) The football gods have chosen the Jaguars as the team of fate and are giving every opportunity for them to advance.
2) The football gods have teased us with chance after chance to take advantage only to take each opportunity away.
Is it so foolish to think that maybe, just maybe, it's case #1?
Last week the Jaguars were put in a win or go home scenario and couldn't pull out the win. However, the Titans, Dolphins, Ravens and Broncos all lost and kept the Jaguars chances alive. The chances are slim, but there shouldn't even be chances at all.
Is it unreasonable for me to believe that the Jaguars will still make the playoffs? Probably. But I do.
The Browns have won their last three games, the Jaguars have lost their last three. But at the end of the day they're still the Browns. The 4-11 Browns who's fans voted Tim Couch as their best quarterback of the decade. The Jaguars have struggled as of late, but they've managed to beat the teams they should beat all season long. They weren't always the prettiest victories, but the only losses to teams under .500 came to the Titans and the two west coast teams on the schedule, the 49ers and Seahawks.
I have no doubt that the Jaguars will play hard to win this game, and do so.
Even with the victory they'll need 4 of the 5 teams ahead of them to go down. Crazy scenario? Maybe not as crazy as we'd initially think.
The Texans manage to "snatch defeat from the jaws of victory" better than any team in the NFL. At 8 wins on the season, they've reached their Kubiak quota for wins on the season. There have been rumors that the Patriots may sit Tom Brady for the finale to keep him healthy, but also to allow the Texans to win. According to Steelers linebacker Lamarr Woodley the Patriots don't want the Steelers in the playoffs.
"No one wants to see Pittsburgh in it. That's just how it is. ...Everybody knows that we're a dangerous team once we get into the playoffs."
Whether Bill Belichick chooses to sit some starters or not, the Texans seem to manage to lose games every time they need to win them.
Baltimore will travel to Oakland where the Jaguars will need the Raiders to come away victorious. The Raiders have managed to stay very competitive against high competition all season and have come away with wins against the Eagles, Bengals, Steelers and Broncos. The Ravens will have to travel to the Pacific time zone, which we know better than anyone, can have a rough effect on their play.
The Jets need to lose to the Bengals on Sunday night to assist the Jaguars on their playoff hopes. The concern here is that the Bengals will pull their starters and intentionally lose for the same reasoning that the Patriots would earlier in the day. The Jets are only in the chase for the playoffs thanks to the Colts using the same generous strategy. The Bengals should beat the rookie-led Jets, but only if they choose to.
That leaves two more games that affect the Jaguars hopes. The Dolphins and Chiefs need to help the Jaguars out as well. The Dolphins enter their matchup against the Steelers wounded and bloodied while the Chiefs enter their matchup at a lowly 3-12. These matchups are where the Jaguar football gods need to help us most. Neither the Steelers nor Broncos should lose these games, but crazier has happened.
Even writing all that makes me start to really doubt our chances. But there shouldn't even be chances. That's exactly what makes me so hopeful. The Jaguars are the team of fate and for whatever reason I think a small miracle isn't out of the question.