Which New York football team has a better chance of getting into the NFL playoffs? That answer is nowhere near as simple as it seems if you simply look at the standings.
The New York Giants are 8-5 following Sunday's 52-27 victory over the New Orleans Saints. They lead the NFC East by one game over the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins. If the playoffs started today the Giants would be the fourth seed in the NFC.
The New York Jets are 6-7 after beating the Jacksonville Jaguars, 17-10, on Sunday. If the playoffs began today the Jets would be on the outside looking in with the Indianapolis Colts (9-4) and Pittsburgh Steelers (7-6) getting the two AFC wild-card spots.
CoolStandings.com gives the Giants a 70.9 percent chance of reaching the playoffs, while it measures the Jets' chance at just 4.2 percent. So, pretty much an open and shut case, right? The Giants have a good shot. The Jets have virtually no shot. Right?
Well, not so fast.
The NFL schedule-makers have done the Giants no favors. They have to face the 11-1 Atlanta Falcons and 9-4 Baltimore Ravens before finishing the season against the 4-9 Philadelphia Eagles. Both the Cowboys and Redskins have easier schedules. If the Giants wind up tied with either team the Giants could lose the tiebreaker as their NFC East record of 2-3 is the worst of the contenders.
The Jets? The schedule-makers have handed them a patty-cake schedule the rest of the way. The Tennessee Titans, Dan Diego Chargers and Buffalo Bills are a combined 14-25, and none of those teams has more than five wins. Conceivably, the Jets could run the table and end the season 9-7. That, of course, after beating cupcake teams the St. Louis Rams, Arizona Cardinals and the Jaguars three of the past four weeks.
There is little doubt that the defending Super Bowl champion Giants are the better team -- albeit a maddening, inconsistent one. The Jets, though, appear to have the easier path.
Which team do you think makes the playoffs? Vote in the poll and let us know.