Week 3 in the NFL is an interesting week, because it is the first week after which the first teams are basically eliminated from playoff contention. Only three times since 1990 ('92 Chargers, '95 Lions, '98 Bills) has a team made the playoffs after starting 0-3. Since realignment in 2002, not one of the 65 teams that started the season 0-3 made the playoffs, which means the 0-2 teams (Eagles and Giants, as well as seven other teams we don't really care about) face must-win games this weekend.
Week 3 is also interesting for 2-0 teams like the Cowboys (and eight other teams), because historically over 70% of the teams that started the season 3-0 eventually made the playoffs, as the table below illustrates.
|Playoff odds based on Week 3 W/L records, since 2002|
|Record after Week 3||3-0||2-1||1-2||0-3|
All of which shouldn't really be a huge surprise. If you start the season 3-0, odds are you are a good team, and good teams make the playoffs more often than not. If you start 0-3, odds are your team just plain sucks.
With all of that in mind, how do you like the Cowboys' chances of advancing to 3-0 this weekend? Most of the BTB writers think the Cowboys have a shot at going 3-0, even if injuries have taken a heavy toll on the team.
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