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Commentary by: Clyde Pickum
If the playoffs started today - Clyde Pikum


New Orleans, NO 12/12/12 – Throughout the season we all take a look at the standings and wonder, what if the playoffs started today? Each week the outlook changes either drastically or subtly, so usually our speculation is a moot point. But for the fun of it I will take a peek into a “what if”.
In the UFC North the Steelers would have won the division with the Browns and Bengals not far behind. If this was to be a speculation column as to how things would play out then this division would get really interesting, but it is merely if the playoffs started today. The Ravens, as in the past three seasons, would end up in the bottom; winless.
 
As for the UFC South we’ve got the Colts who are the clear cut winners. Second would be the Texans and four games behind at 6-6 having dropped their last two. Surprisingly in this division the Titans have much improved from a year ago and are not in the basement.
 
The UFC East is an intriguing division in that it could be considered, perhaps, the weakest of the eight. Right now there is a three way tie at 6-5 between the Dolphins, Bills and Jets. The Patriots are way out at 3-8. As of today, the Dolphins would take the division in the tie breakers.
Finally in the UFC is the West. The Broncos have taken a nose dive in the past few weeks, opening the door for the Chargers to take the division ahead of the Raiders this year.

For the FFC wild card we have a couple of familiar faces. Detroit and Tampa Bay look to be in right now with Dallas two and a half games behind each.
The first round of the playoffs would look something like this: Vikings, Panthers, Colts and Steelers with first round byes. The Chargers would host the Bengals while the Dolphins would host the Browns in the UFC. As for the FFC, the Eagles would host the Lions and the Rams would host the Buccaneers.
As for the hypothetical results, that’s up for you to decide because when it’s all said and done any team in the contest could win it all.
-          Clyde Pikum, Houston Chronicle
So where does that leave us with the wild card? Again, as of now both wild card teams would hail from the UFC North. Both the Browns and Bengals would be in for the post season.
Before I take a look into the UFC matchups, let me continue on to the participants in the FFC.
 
FFC North has the Vikings winning their second divisional title with the once reigning division champion Lions sitting in second. Chicago is again fighting Baltimore for top pick.
The defending Power Bowl champions have a very familiar feel about them from last year’s championship run. They have only lost one game thus far and managed to keep a strong Buccaneers team at bay. Baltimore and Chicago better watch their backs, there is a new participant in #1 pick status coming from Atlanta.
The Eagles once again are soaring high as they lead the FFC East. Dallas could make a wild card if things change quite a bit but look for the one time champions to be sitting at home on the range.
It has been argued that perhaps the FFC West is weaker than the UFC East. It’s quite possible, but don’t tell the fans in St. Louis who is looking their first playoff appearance in the eye. They are currently just above Seattle while the one time strong 49ers have failed to put together much of a season at all.