Week 11 ripe with opportunity for Dolphins amid AFC playoff contenders

The Miami Dolphins’ mantra ever since head coach Brian Flores came into the picture has been to embrace and take things one day at a time. To win the day. And while many on the outside of the Dolphins program are eager to talk about the Miami Dolphins’ playoff potential and the future of the franchise, Miami is solely focused on one thing this week: the Denver Broncos.

Good! They should be.

But this weekend’s slate of games offers a terrific intersection of the Dolphins’ eagerness to win the day on Saturday and the opportunities that will be afforded to them if they do from a bigger picture point of view. Because Week 11 of the 2020 NFL season is filled with heavyweight matchups that can provide some drastic upheaval within the AFC conference standings. And if the Dolphins hold up their end of the bargain against the Denver Broncos, Miami’s playoff standing will be end up being the real winners of Week 11.

As things currently stand, here is the AFC Conference Standings:

  1. Pittsburgh Steelers: 9-0 (AFC North leaders)

  2. Kansas City Chiefs: 8-1 (AFC West leaders)

  3. Buffalo Bills: 7-3 (AFC East leaders)

  4. Indianapolis Colts: 6-3 (AFC South leaders)

  5. Las Vegas Raiders: 6-3 (1st Wild Card)

  6. Miami Dolphins: 6-3 (2nd Wild Card)

  7. Baltimore Ravens: 6-3 (3rd Wild Card)

  8. Tennessee Titans: 6-3 (In the hunt)

  9. Cleveland Browns: 6-3 (In the hunt)

It’s a crowded group. But it is also about to get a little bit of separation. Week 11 of the 2020 season sees a clash of 6-3 AFC teams when the Titans and Ravens square off. The 6-3 Indianapolis Colts will be facing off against an NFC top team, the 7-2 Green Bay Packers. The Wild Card team in front of Miami, the Las Vegas Raiders? They host the 8-1 Kansas City Chiefs this weekend — and after serving up the Chiefs’ lone loss thus far this season it is difficult to believe they’re going to be sneaking up on anyone.

The best case scenario for Miami? They take care of the business they need to in order to win the day in Denver, and then see the Titans defeat the Ravens (Baltimore more likely wild card berth given Pittsburgh’s 3.5 game lead in the division at this point), the Packers beat the Colts and then Chiefs beat the Raiders. Such a development would achieve two things:

  • Pull Miami even with the Buffalo Bills with 6 games to play for the lead in the AFC East (including a head to head in Week 17)

  • Prop the Dolphins at the top of the Wild Card contenders at 7-3 and offer a game of separation between those that are currently trailing them based on tiebreakers at this point in time

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