Here's how the NFL playoff picture looks after Week 16's afternoon games.
x — 1. Kansas City Chiefs (11-3): AFC West leader. Losses by Chargers and Texans creates massive opportunity. K.C. will earn division crown and home-field advantage by beating Seattle on Sunday night.
y — 2. New England Patriots (10-5): AFC East champions. Reports of dynastic death may have been premature. Pats locked up division for unprecedented 10th consecutive season and — perhaps more important — vaulted back in front of Houston and will get their accustomed bye week by defeating Jets in Week 17.
x — 3. Houston Texans (10-5): AFC South leader. Fairly disastrous weekend after their failure to close out Eagles cost them inside track for first-round bye and chance to secure division they now lead by just one game over Indianapolis and Tennessee. However Pittsburgh's loss Sunday evening clinched at least a wild card for Houston.
4. Baltimore Ravens (9-6): AFC North leader. They move into divisional pole position after beating Chargers on Saturday and watching Steelers fall Sunday. Week 17 date with Browns will be huge.
x — 5. Los Angeles Chargers (11-4): Wild card No. 1. Their shot at No. 1 seed pretty much gone after loss to Ravens. Bolts would need to win in Week 17 and hope Chiefs lose final two games.
6. Indianapolis Colts (9-6): Wild card No. 2. They barely survived Giants but later elevated into postseason field with Pittsburgh's loss. Week 17 game vs. Tennessee will be winner-take-all.
7. Tennessee Titans (9-6): Don't qualify for postseason at this point.
8. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-6-1): Don't qualify for postseason at this point.
* — 1. New Orleans Saints (13-2): NFC South champions. Victory over Steelers gave them home-field advantage, which they parlayed into Super Bowl victory last time they had it in 2009.
y — 2. Los Angeles Rams (12-3): NFC West champions. Still a win away from clinching bye.
y — 3. Chicago Bears (11-4): NFC North champions. They can finish no worse than the third seed but could still steal first-round bye if they wind up tied with Rams.
y — 4. Dallas Cowboys (9-6): NFC East champions. Claimed division title for third time in past five seasons.
5. Seattle Seahawks (8-6): Wild card No. 1. Washington's loss Saturday means win-and-in scenario for Seahawks against Kansas City.
6. Minnesota Vikings (8-6-1): Wild card No. 2. Beat Chicago in Week 17, and they're in.
7. Philadelphia Eagles (8-7): Don't qualify for postseason at this point.
x — clinched playoff berth
y — clinched division
z — clinched first-round bye
* — clinched home-field advantage
Follow Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis
Source: Read Full Article