The Miami Dolphins are currently in the NFL's playoff picture as the No. 6 seed. If they stay in that position then they will have to play the Pittsburgh Steelers in what promises to be a difficult match-up for Miami. Not only will the Dolphins face the Steelers in a game from Pittsburgh, however Miami will have to deal with Le'Veon Bell. The Dolphins are terrible against the rush this season and so having to stop Bell to beat Pittsburgh in their home venue promises to be very difficult for the fins.

Miami's road might go through New England

Furthermore, if Miami enter the AFC playoffs as the six seed and manage to survive Wild Card Weekend, all that will do is set up a likely divisional-round game against the New England Patriots, a game that would come from New England.

The Patriots have lots of potential to finish first, they would do so if they beat Miami next week, and the re-seeding in the divisional round would guarantee that the Dolphins play New England in the conference semifinals. Going through Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh and then New England in New England just to get to a road game in the conference finals isn't a good spot for Miami to be at all.

Dolphins need to win in Week 17

In the final week of the regular season, the Dolphins will host the New England Patriots. The first thing that the Dolphins want to do is win that game. However, in order to bump themselves up to a five seed, Miami would then need to hope for something that doesn't have a lot of hope: Miami would need KC to lose to the San Diego Chargers.

The Chargers themselves aren't playing for anything, however competitiveness and pride can make the eliminated teams tricky in the late going still. Miami, if they beat New England, have to hope that happens in order to improve their playoff outlook.

A five seed sees Miami play the Houston Texans in Wild Card Weekend and that's a game that the Dolphins can win more realistically than one against Pittsburgh.

Furthermore, if Miami beat New England, the Pats might lose the top seed to Oakland. If Miami win in Week 17 it's possible that Miami's road to the conference finals goes through Houston and Oakland instead of Pittsburgh and New England.

Don't even tell me, as a Dolphins fan, that the former isn't a better road given that Oakland are using a back-up QB now.

If you are a Miami fan then you certainly want the Dolphins to win next week. You then want Oakland to win and KC to lose. However, if KC win then the Dolphins still want Oakland to win. If the Raiders get top seed and Miami the six seed then it would create a path to the conference finals for the fins through Pittsburgh and Oakland. I think Le'Veon Bell still knocks out Miami there, but if the Dolphins score the upset then the next round would be a whole lot easier.

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