Oh, those Dolphins, those wildly vascillating rascals!
One week they're flopping in Buffalo, the next they're taking down Tom Brady in a burst of glory, and they've survived so many setbacks we're just optimistic enough to believe in playoffs chances that resemble the lower jaw of a lantern fish (something you should never, ever look up in Google if you ever want to enter the wa -- HEY WE TOLD YOU.)
According to SportsClubStats.com, the Fins are that honey-lime colored line hovering at a 17% chance of seeing the postseason, and the Jaguars, this Sunday's opponent, are the orange line just above. Miami's win last week put them one game behind New England in the AFC East, and among four teams that stand one game behind Jacksonville for the second AFC Wild Card berth.
So what does it all mean, other than that you're never dipping a toe in the ocean again without fear?
To have any shot, the Dolphins must win out. The good news is that Jacksonville may be a relatively formidable 7-5, but Houston is 5-7 and the Steelers haven't been faring much better at 6-6.
Winnable? Each and every one. But of course, the Dolphins haven't strung more than two wins together all season long. Four is a challenge, and with the way this season's gone, we're more likely to see Joey Porter in a dress strutting through South Beach (don't worry, there's no way we're graphing that).
Even if they do win out, Miami needs New England to lose to any of 3 remaining AFC teams on their schedule, or the Ravens to lose to any team at all.
How does Tony Sparano feel? "I like knowing [we] have a chance right now. I kind of like it. I like knowing that you have a chance and like knowing there are some teams right now not playing for very much and we have a chance. We are going to try to do everything in our power to make this the best run we can make it. We will see where it goes."
Oh, we'll see, alright. We'll be watching through our fingers.
Janie Campbell would like Cameron Wake to smash into this graph and Channing Crowder to intercept its tiny odds. Her work has appeared in irreverent sports sites around the Internet.