Now that the regular season is over, we can take a look back and get a better sense of which teams were helped and hurt by scheduling. That can help clarify whether a deserving team was unfairly left out of the playoffs, and it can help us identify the relative strengths of the 12 that are still playing.

A few observations:

I was disappointed that the Jets were eliminated. I would have liked to have seen Ryan Fitzpatrick and Brandon Marshall get to play another game. Fitzpatrick has started over 100 career games yet has never started in the playoffs. But with the schedules in front of me, I can’t say they were cheated. The Jets played the easiest schedule in the league, yet still came up a game short. They lost a pair to the Bills, and they lost to the Eagles, Raiders and Texans. If they wanted to be in the playoffs, they should have figured out a way to win one of those.

The Dolphins and Jaguars also played really easy schedules this year, which only reinforces the reality that they weren’t very good.

Washington played a league-low three games against teams that finished with winning records. Three teams played only four of those games – Jets, Bucs and Panthers.

Four teams played nine games against teams that finished with winning records: Bears, Rams, Browns and Raiders.

The Packers played the league’s hardest schedule. Actually, they tied with the Bears. For both of those teams, their opponents went 130-110 in other games. But I still simply don’t like what I saw out of Green Bay this year. I don’t believe they’ll win at Washington this week.

Here are all 32, with playoff teams tagged. For each team, their own games are removed. That is, Carolina's 16 opponents went 114-142 -- 2-14 against the Panthers, and 112-128 against the rest of the league.

NY Jets107133.4464
• Carolina112128.4674
• Washington112128.4673
Tampa Bay114126.4754
• New England117123.4886
• Cincinnati118122.4927
NY Giants118122.4926
• Arizona119121.4966
New Orleans120120.5005
• Houston120120.5005
• Kansas City122118.5087
San Diego123117.5138
• Pittsburgh123117.5137
• Denver124116.5177
• Minnesota124116.5176
St. Louis126114.5259
San Francisco127113.5298
• Seattle127113.5297
• Green Bay130110.5427

—Ian Allan