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At 4-5, Texans Playoff Hopes Hanging By A Thread

In most seasons, a 4-5 record through nine games usually means no playoffs. With the Indianapolis Colts being so dominant in recent years, 4-5 definitely has spelled doom in terms of winning the AFC South. Most pundits have written off the Houston Texans' playoff chances, along with some of their fans. But there is still reason to keep hope alive, at least for another week. Since the current playoff system was instituted in 1990, 15 teams have qualified for the playoffs after posting a losing record through its first nine games. They are....

YEAR

TEAM

RECORD AFTER NINE GAMES

FINAL RECORD

ADVANCED TO

1990

Houston

4-5

9-7

 

Wild Card

1990

New Orleans

4-5

8-8

 

Wild Card

1992

San Diego

4-5

11-5

 

Divisional

1994

Detroit

4-5

9-7

 

Wild Card

1994

New England

3-6

10-6

 

Wild Card

1995

Detroit

3-6

10-6

 

Wild Card

1995

San Diego

4-5

9-7

 

Wild Card

1996

Jacksonville

3-6

9-7

 

AFC Championship

1997

Detroit

4-5

9-7

 

Wild Card

2001

Tampa Bay

4-5

9-7

 

Wild Card

2002

Cleveland

4-5

9-7

 

Wild Card

2002

NY Jets

4-5

9-7

 

Divisional

2003

Green Bay

4-5

10-6

 

Divisional

2008

San Diego

4-5

8-8

 

Divisional

2009

NY Jets

4-5

9-7

 

AFC Championship

 

 

It's an incredibly safe bet that an NFC team currently with a sub-.500 record will make the playoffs. San Francisco or St. Louis are in the mix, and I wouldn't count out the Washington Redskins just yet either despite how poorly they've played the past two weeks.

In the AFC, San Diego looks like they're going to pull off their perennial comeback act and win their division. Outside of the Chargers, Houston is the only other team with an outside shot. They're not out of it by any stretch of the imagination in the AFC South, and if they can somehow win their remaining six AFC games, they might be in contention for a Wild Card even.

First things first though, and that's winning against a very solid and confident Jets team.

s

Images by eflon used in background images under a Creative Commons license. Thank you.