The 12 players in last week's playoff picture are the same 12 this week -- but a full ten of them have changed position:
The entire AFC has switches around, with the 1-2 seeds, 3-4 seeds, and 5-6 seeds all swapping positions. In the NFC, Turf Toe and Boardwalkers have climbed into the 1st-round bye spots, pushing down Ignats and Evil Squad Of Evil.
We have a lot of divisional matchups to look at this week -- exactly one in each of the eight divisions -- so let's get this under way.
We get things under way in the AFC North which has more or less become a two-player race. At the top we have the division-leading Mean Machine staying a match ahead of Brenda's Bulldogs, while I Will Win It All and JPP's Missing Fingers are several matches back. Mean Machine has been stellar in divisional play this season, the only player in the league to go 4-0 to this point. If I Will Win It All wants to have any legitimate hopes at a postseason shot, then he needs to find his first divisional win of the year right here.
The AFC South is currently ruled by Cutler's Revenge, who has a three-match lead on the #2 player there. In order to hope to make up any ground, then that player, Fishlady, will need to get revenge for a Week 6 loss when she has her rematch against StuB here. StuB, for his part, is only one match behind Fishlady, so a win here would push him into second in the division and make him the player with the best chance of unseating Cutler's Revenge down the stretch.
A tough loss by AFC East leader Vlad M in his last match has dropped him out of the top spot in the Power Rankings, but he can make a big statement down the stretch beginning this week. Following his bye last week, he'll see divisional action in four of the final six weeks of the season starting with this match against Deesato. But if four out of six divisionals ahead sounds like a lot, Deesato's remaining schedule is even more important with fully five of these final six being against divisional opponents. He's won the one divisional match he's had so far, so picking up a win here would give him a huge advantage going forward.
If you've been following NFL news, you've been hearing a lot of hype about how the Saints started out 0-2 and then reeled off eight-straight wins to this point. We have a player in the AFC West who could beat that this week, where Why Not Zoidberg? is looking for his eighth-straight win after an 0-3 start. It's looking less and less likely like Secretly Victorious will be able to win the division (going 0-3 in divisional matches up to this point will be a very hard hill to overcome), so a win here will be critical in for her place in the Wild Card picture.
All four NFC division leaders are currently 7-3, so each week from here on our will be huge for them as they fight for playoff seeding. Ignats is the only one of those four facing divisional action this week, facing a challenge from NFC North contender Bassturds. Ignats is holding onto a two-match lead on the rest of the pack, but if Bassturds keeps his perfect divisional record going and gets the season sweep here, then Ignats could find himself sliding down from his division crown spot as early as next week.
Both Ragesters and Beep Bops are a full three matches back from the NFC South lead, so there is little-to-no margin of error to be found here. The division-leading Boardwalkers would have to experience a pretty monumental collapse in order to lose the division, but if that ends up happening, then whoever comes out on the short end of this match will have next to no chance to make a move to the top down the stretch.
The NFC East is another divisional where the leader has a three-match lead, and Turf Toe would have to seriously crash and burn to end up with anything other than the division title. But if that engine starts smoking, then Jeff B can put himself in the best position of anyone to take over his spot. He's currently three matches back on Turf Toe, but if he can get a win over Hyena this week, he has a chance to help close the gap. We're getting into "last gasp" territory for Hyena here -- he's four back in the division, and still three back from the #6 seed. If he's hoping to see the pool in January, his margin of error is likely down to zero.
We'll finish up in the tightest division in the league, the NFC West, where Fighting Sporks' comeback story is still going strong. He started 1-4 and it looked like it was going to be his worst season ever. Since this, it's been five very strong wins in a row and he's just a step away from taking over the top spot in the division. Standing in his way is Heisendad, who is looking to complete the season sweep over Fighting Sporks. If he can do that then he could find himself in second place in the division at the end of this week, and a win away from potentially making the move from fourth to first in record time
All right, that's our look at this week's divisional matchups -- now it's time to get those picks in. As we mentioned above, there are three Thanksgiving Day games. People have whole friends/family/food thing going on, so we're not going to be able to chase people down for their picks that day. If you don't want to default to all the away teams, then make sure you have your pick submitted ahead of the 8:00 deadline on Wednesday night. Have a great week everyone!