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League One Power Rankings - Week 22

By NICHOLAS MURRAY -, 08/31/21, 4:00PM EDT


Can Fort Lauderdale march its way into the League One Playoffs? Let’s do some math

Here’s a question for you. Would you rather go 2W-2L-0D over the course of four games, or 1W-0L-3D?

The answer I hope you gave was the former. Yeah, everyone likes an undefeated streak, but you know what matters more when it comes to the League One standings? Winning.

That’s why with its seven wins this season, Fort Lauderdale CF is now in third place in League One after its 4-2 romp past South Georgia Tormenta FC on Saturday night, with total wins being the first tiebreaker in what continues to be a highly congested race for the playoffs.

As you might have guessed from the opening question, FTLCF has now alternated wins and losses in its last four games. It’s still below what we’d call .500 with seven wins and nine losses overall in an up-and-down campaign, but if this pattern continues, would it be enough to make the playoffs? There’s a chance it could.

Think about it for a moment – Fort Lauderdale would end the season on 37 points if it went 4-4-0 the rest of the way and sat with 11 wins. If North Texas and New England continue to average their current PPG totals the rest of the way, they’d be all set with the Revolution II up at 40 points and NTSC on 39.

But then things get muddier.

Teams like Toronto FC II, the Richmond Kickers and Forward Madison FC are currently on course for 37 points if they maintain their PPG averages, but if that’s all they average, they’re not going to have the wins they need to pass Fort Lauderdale in our hypothetical here on 11.

And that’s why winning, rather than going on undefeated runs, matters more when it comes to the final stretch of the season.

Here’s how everything else looks right now. As always, feel free to come and yell at me on Twitter (@NJEMurray).

Biggest Movers






1 Chattanooga Red Wolves SC
Week 22: @ FTL

Last Week: 1
The Red Wolves set the League One record for consecutive games without defeat at 13 on Friday against Toronto FC II, but the draw left the door open for Union Omaha…
2 Union Omaha
Week 22: @ NC

Last Week: 2
… who promptly drew as well at home to North Texas SC. Los Buhos still have that game in hand but sitting with more draws than wins at home is looking pretty costly at this moment.
3 New England Revolution II
Week 22: v. TUC, v. TRM

Last Week: 3
The Revolution II might have slipped below the playoff line during their bye week, but with everyone except for Fort Lauderdale above them drawing, they’re still in a very good position.
4 North Texas SC
Week 22: v. TUC

Last Week: 4
North Texas has drawn three games in a row after Saturday’s visit to Omaha. That’s nice enough, but they’ll be wanting a victory at home this week both to try and shift into third but also to knock Tucson’s hot streak on the head.
5 Toronto FC II
Week 22: @ GVL

Last Week: 5
A draw at home to the league leaders isn’t bad, but Toronto is going to need to get going starting on Friday with what will be a difficult game against a Greenville side desperate for a victory.
6 Richmond Kickers
Week 22: N/A

Last Week: 6
Going 0-2-2 while only scoring once against the last-placed team in the league – no offense NCFC – is going to be one of the biggest reasons the Kickers don’t make the playoffs if that comes to pass.
7 FC Tucson
Week 22: @ NE, @ NTX
Last Week: 9
Tucson’s on the surge with two consecutive victories after defeating Greenville on Saturday. If it can make it three in a row against the Revolution II on Wednesday, this side could suddenly be above the playoff line. Who saw that coming on August 14?
8 Fort Lauderdale CF
Week 22: v. CHA
Last Week: 10
As we’ve shown, there’s a path to the playoffs for Fort Lauderdale after Saturday’s win against Tormenta FC, if it can keep winning enough. We’ll see what happens against the Red Wolves on Saturday.
9 North Carolina FC
Week 22: v. OMA
Last Week: 11
A four-point week and back-to-back shutouts doesn’t mean NCFC is any closer to a playoff place, but if I was setting a goal for this side, it would be to get past the point-per-game threshold by the end of the season.
10 Forward Madison FC
Week 22: N/A
Last Week: 7
Another step back for Madison, which is still in this but is going to have to show more than it did last week in three critical upcoming Henny Derbies against the Richmond Kickers.
11 South Georgia Tormenta FC
Week 22: @ NE
Last Week: 8
Tormenta FC is going to have to do a lot of winning in its final seven games to make the playoffs, starting on Sunday in New England.
12 Greenville Triumph SC
Week 22: v. TOR

Last Week: 12
What an awful month it’s been for Greenville, where everything that could go wrong did. They’ll be looking to turn the page on Friday night against Toronto, and re-establish their playoff credentials.

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