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How many 0-2 and 2-0 teams will make the playoffs?

Deangelo Williams Steelers

As we pointed out earlier in the week, a team can pretty much seal its fate with an 0-2 beginning to the NFL season, while a 2-0 start sets a team up quite nicely to contend for a playoff spot. Only eight of 75 teams to start 0-2 since 2007 went on to make the playoffs, while 58.6% of teams to start 2-0 in that time earned a playoff berth. These numbers were a hot topic in the fallout of Week 2 and bettors can now get in on the action and wager on how many teams in each situation will end up in the playoffs.

For how many 0-2 teams get in, online sportsbook Bovada has the OVER/UNDER set at 1.5 teams. Taking a look at this season’s crop of 0-2 teams — the Browns, Jaguars, Dolphins, Bills, Colts, Redskins, Saints and Bears — I’d lean strongly toward the UNDER. 2015 saw two 0-2 teams make the playoffs, with the Seahawks and Texans getting in, but on average we’ve seen less than one 0-2 team per year advance to the postseason.

According to PredictionMachine.com, the 0-2 team that’s most likely to get in is the Redskins. The site gives them a 14.1% chance to make the playoffs. If I needed to pick a team out of this group, I’d give the Redskins the edge as well considering how weak the NFC East has been in recent seasons. Washington got off to a fairly slow start last season (2-4), but finished the season with four straight wins to barely sneak into the playoffs.

Looking at this year’s 2-0 teams — the Patriots, Texans, Broncos, Steelers, Ravens, Giants, Vikings and Eagles — Bovada has the total set at 6.5 for how many of them will make the playoffs. I see the Eagles regressing with stiffer competition on the horizon, but no one else stands out as a team I’d cross off my list. The Vikings obviously might be in a bit of trouble with Adrian Peterson sidelined and a tough three-game stretch with the Panthers, Giants and Texans coming up, but from Week 6 to 14 they face just two playoff teams from 2015 with one of those being the Redskins. Still though, with injuries and everything else that creeps up throughout a season, that 6.5 number is probably one team too high.

Here's a look at the odds being offered by Bovada:

How many teams that are 0-2 will make the playoffs?
  • Over 1.5 +150
  • Under 1.5 -200
How many teams that are 2-0 will make the playoffs?
  • Over 6.5 +110
  • Under 6.5 -150