(Image credit William Purnell/USA Today Sports)
Written by: Nicholas Mullick
Playoffs are getting closer and closer with each week that passes. Now there is plenty of football left to be played but again it is crunch time for some teams. So until the playoffs hit I will continue to update the current playoff picture for both the AFC and NFC. For this article, I will dive into the AFC.
X- Clinched Playoff Spot
Y - Clinched Division
Z- Clinched 1st Round Bye
Division Winners (Seed 1-4)
1. Y - Kansas City Chiefs (11-4)
I want to congratulate the Kansas City Chiefs as not only will the team play in the playoffs this season but once again are the AFC West champions. They did a great job and destroyed the incompetent Pittsburgh Steelers last week. Oh, I'm going to get to the Steelers later in this article. But well done by the Chiefs.
2. Tennessee Titans (10-5)
The Titans did well but have to perform a lot more smoothly if they want to make a deep playoff push. The 49ers had a tough time covering AJ Brown. The 49ers literally gift-wrapped this victory to the Tennessee Titans. The Titans need to be healthier in upcoming games but keep in mind the Colts are catching up and could steal this division from them. On a side note, how have the Titans not clinched a playoff spot in this matchup?
3. Cincinnati Bengals (9-6)
Bengals once again impress, beating the Ravens. The Bengals should absolutely take this division. Especially with the Ravens and Browns being injured plus inconsistent. To add on the Pittsburgh Steelers are incompetent and I would be shocked if the Bengals were not the winners of the AFC North.
4. Buffalo Bills (9-6)
The Buffalo Bills got a huge victory against the New England Patriots. Especially as it gives the Bills a tiebreaker for the Division if they have the same record. So the Bills want to keep winning to fully secure a spot in the playoffs.
Wild Card Teams (Seed 5-7)
5. Indianapolis Colts (9-6)
The Colts have been a strong team and do have a shot stealing the AFC South division from the Titans. A big problem is that the Colts are going to be without QB Carson Wentz and potentially the entire o-line due to injuries and a Covid-19 outbreak. So the Colts are in trouble for next week.
6. New England Patriots (9-6)
The Patriots suffered a tough loss last week against the Bills. But I am not concerned as they face the Jaguars which should secure a playoff spot for this season.
7. Miami Dolphins (8-7)
I never want to hear that Brian Flores is a bad coach and is holding this team back ever again. The Dolphins have won their last seven games and boy have they looked impressive. If the season ended today the Dolphins would make the playoffs.
In the hunt
8. Los Angeles Chargers (8-7)
I have no idea what happened last week and the Chargers need to wake up if they want to make the playoffs for this season.
9. Las Vegas Raiders (8-7)
The Raiders have like I keep saying have had a dark early season and I would love to have the Raiders play in the playoffs so there can be a bright ending for the Raiders as a result of that Dark Season. They will have a tough matchup against the Chargers but should take care of the Colts who will not have QB Carson Wentz and potentially their entire o-line.
10. Baltimore Ravens (8-7)
It is panic time in Baltimore. The Injuries may be too much and it has derailed their secondary. The Ravens may need to rush Lamar Jackson who won't be the same player as he utilizes his legs more than his arm.
11. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7-1)
The Steelers once again continue to show their incompetence especially with that awful matchup against the Chiefs which showed how undisciplined and unprepared they were. That is all on coaching and it has been a big issue for this season. Remind me why Mike Tomlin is still the Head Coach for the Steelers again? I doubt the Steelers make the playoffs this year as they are a complete mess.
12. Cleveland Browns (7-8)
I'm not ruling out Cleveland yet as they played a close game against the Packers and should have won if it was not for the refs missing an easy pass interference call. They need to win these final games to have a chance at making the playoffs. The Browns luckily face the incompetent Steelers and a Bengals team that will most likely rest their starters for the playoffs.
13. Denver Broncos (7-8)
I doubt the Broncos make the playoffs here especially when they have Drew Lock as the QB. My goodness has he not been good at all. Also what is with the mismanagement of the running game for the Denver Broncos.
Eliminated From Playoff Contention
14. New York Jets (4-11)
Jets are on the Tank for a higher draft pick.
15. Houston Texans (4-11)
Texans are on the Tank for a higher draft pick.
16. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-13)
Jaguars are on the Tank for a higher draft pick.