Just how unlucky was Dolphins’ 2020 playoff miss?

Kyle Crabbs
·2 min read

The NFL’s Wild Card gauntlet is set to kick off with another three games this afternoon after entertaining clashes rolled in the league’s postseason play on Saturday. But the Miami Dolphins, with their 10 wins, will not be a part of the festivities — a brutal break of fortunes in spite of the NFL opening up an additional spot in the playoff seeding this season for each conference.

The AFC and NFC both welcomed seven teams to the festivities — and Miami is just the 13th team (of course they’re No. 13) since the Wild Card era began in 1990 to miss the postseason with double digit wins.

As if that isn’t cruel enough, consider this: each of the NFL’s 12 other non-playoff 10-win teams would have made the cut had a seventh playoff spot existed prior to the 2020 season:

  • 2015 New York Jets: 10-6 (next best team, Miami, was 8-8)

  • 2014 Philadelphia Eagles: 10-6 (next best team, San Francisco, was 8-8)

  • 2013 Arizona Cardinals: 10-6 (next best teams, Chicago & Dallas, were 8-8)

  • 2012 Chicago Bears: 10-6 (next best team, New York Giants, were 9-7)

  • 2010 Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 10-6 (next best team, New York Giants, were 10-6)

  • 2010 New York Giants: 10-6 (next best team, Tampa Bay, was 10-6)

  • 2008 New England Patriots: 11-5 (next best team, New York Jets were 9-7)

  • 2007 Cleveland Browns: 10-6 (next best teams, Buffalo & Denver, were 7-9)

  • 2005 Kansas City Chiefs: 10-6 (next best team, Miami, was 9-7)

  • 2003 Miami Dolphins: 10-6 (next best team, Cincinnati, was 8-8)

  • 1991 Philadelphia Eagles: 10-6 (next best team, San Francisco, was 10-6)

  • 1991 San Francisco 49ers: 10-6 (next best team, Philadelphia, was 10-6)

In a very fitting bit of Miami Dolphins trivia, only twice in the NFL’s Wild Card era has a conference’s No. 8 seed finished the season with 10 wins and missed the postseason. Until now. And both of the previous instances in 1991 and 2010 came in the NFC — so it is now official.

The 2020 Miami Dolphins are the AFC’s most unlucky team of the NFL’s 30 years of Wild Card era postseason play. Because of course they are.