The New England Revolution won just two games over a two-month span from June 25 to August 28. But as of Wednesday, they sit above the red line in the No. 6 seed in the East.


This is due to the fact that they have won their last three MLS games, including a 3-1 win in Montreal on Saturday against a struggling Impact side. The Revolution now have 36 points through 30 games, two points above D.C. United and Orlando City SC.


Orlando had a troubling result over the weekend, losing 4-1 at home to a Columbus Crew SC side that was at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. They will face a United side on Saturday (7 pm ET; MLS LIVE) that is coming off a thrilling draw in Chicago.


This game and their match-up on Decision Day will go a long way in deciding who will battle the Revolution for the final playoffs spot in the East.


Out west, the Portland Timbers jumped up to the No. 5 seed thanks to their win against the Philadelphia Union, with Sporting Kansas City dropping to the No. 6 seed after conceding a late goal to the LA Galaxy that left them with just one point.


This Saturday, Sporting KC will face the San Jose Earthquakes in a game that is a must-win for Dominic Kinnear's side (10:30 pm ET, MLS LIVE). The Quakes currently sit six points behind Sporting, with two games in hand. They will have another chance to face Sporting on Decision Day, hoping they will still have a shot to pass the 2013 MLS Cup champs on the last day of the regular season.


There's a good shot that they will still be alive, as Portland and Sporting face the two toughest schedules the rest of the way.


If the regular season ended today ...


Eastern Conference Playoff Bracket


Conference Semifinals


1. Toronto FC


Conference Semifinals


2. New York Red Bulls




Knockout Round


3. New York City FC


VS.


6. New England Revolution


Knockout Round


4. Philadelphia Union


VS.


5. Montreal Impact


Western Conference Playoff Bracket


Conference Semifinals


1. FC Dallas


Conference Semifinals


2. LA Galaxy




Knockout Round


3. Colorado Rapids


VS.


6. Sporting Kansas City


Knockout Round


4. Real Salt Lake


VS.


5. Portland Timbers


Strength of Schedule and Expected Points


The strength of schedule metric takes into account the average points per game (PPG) that each team's opponents earn at home and on the road. The lower the PPG, the easier the schedule.


For example, if FC Dallas traveled to play the LA Galaxy, who have averaged 2.5 PPG at home, and then hosted the Vancouver Whitecaps, who have averaged 1.53 PPG on the road, their opponents' PPG would be 2.02. The higher the PPG, the more difficult a team's remaining schedule.


The Expected Points metric is strictly based off of what teams have done up to this point. For example, New York City FC have collected 1.60 points per game at home this season and 1.40 on the road. So if they continue averaging those totals, with five more home games left and four more road games, they would be expected to collect 51.00 points.


Here are both the Strength of Schedule and Expected Points rankings for each conference:

Red Line Report: Two crucial showdowns could shape East, West playoffs - https://league-mp7static.mlsdigital.net/images/East-SOS-9-20.jpg
TEAM
EXPECTED POINTS
Toronto FC
56.07
New York Red Bulls
52.67
New York City FC
51.00
Philadelphia Union
46.47
Montreal Impact
44.36
New England Revolution
40.80
D.C. United
40.31
Orlando City SC
39.50
Columbus Crew SC
34.44
Chicago Fire
31.47
Red Line Report: Two crucial showdowns could shape East, West playoffs - https://league-mp7static.mlsdigital.net/images/West-SOS-9-20.jpg
TEAM
EXPECTED POINTS
FC Dallas
58.93
Colorado Rapids
57.07
LA Galaxy
54.40
Real Salt Lake
49.87
Portland Timbers
44.47
Sporting Kansas City
44.02
Seattle Sounders
42.50
San Jose Earthquakes
41.29
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
39.16
Houston Dynamo
36.18