Thursday, January 20, 2022

2021 NFL playoff picture, standings: Colts’ shocking loss to Jags knocks them out; Steelers back in AFC race

The longest season in NFL history is coming to a close, with a  crazy slate of early games in the Week 18 window. The Indianapolis Colts are eliminated from the playoffs after losing to the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Pittsburgh Steelers beating the Baltimore Ravens in overtime. Pittsburgh makes the playoffs if the Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders don’t tie on Sunday night. 

If the Chargers and Raiders tie, both teams make the playoffs and the Steelers are out. The NFC currently has its playoff implications going on in the late window, as the San Francisco 49ers clinch a playoff berth with a win over the Rams or a New Orleans Saints loss. The Saints make the playoffs with a win and 49ers loss. 

Below, you can find a conference breakdown of the current standings, how each club performed in Week 18 and its playoff matchup and draft pick selection (for the teams eliminated from the playoffs). 

AFC

z-Titans

12

5

.706

5-1

8-4

y-Chiefs

12

5

.706

5-1

7-5

y-Bills

10

6

.625

4-1

6-5

y-Bengals

10

7

.588

4-2

8-4

x-Patriots

10

6

.625

3-2

8-3

Chargers

9

7

.563

3-2

6-5

Raiders

9

7

.563

2-3

7-4

Steelers 

9

7

1

.559

4-2

7-5

e-Colts

9

8

.529

3-3

7-5

e-Dolphins

8

8

.500

3-2

5-6

e-Browns

8

9

.471

3-3

5-7

e-Ravens

8

9

.471

1-5

5-7

e-Broncos

7

10

.412

1-5

3-9

e-Jets

4

12

.250

0-5

4-7

e-Texans

4

13

.235

3-3

4-8

e-Jaguars

3

14

.176

1-5

3-9

x-clinched playoff berth

y-clinched division title

z-clinched home-field advantage

e-eliminated from playoffs

Tennessee Titans 

What to know: The Titans clinched the No. 1 seed in the AFC with their win over the Texans in Week 18. They have home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. 

Kansas City Chiefs

What to know: The Chiefs will be the No. 2 seed in the conference after the Titans beat the Texans Sunday. The Titans owned the head-to-head tiebreaker, which is why they got the spot.  

Cincinnati Bengals

What to know: The Bengals have clinched the AFC North. Cincinnati is currently the No. 4 seed in the AFC.

Buffalo Bills

What to know: The Bills didn’t lock up the AFC East yet, but clinched a playoff berth. They clinch the AFC East in Week 18 with a win. 

Remaining schedule: vs. Jets

New England Patriots

What to know: The Patriots clinched a playoff berth. New England wins the AFC East with a win and a Buffalo loss to New York in Week 18. The Patriots will be at least the No. 5 seed with a win. 

Remaining schedule: at Dolphins 

Los Angeles Chargers

What to know: The Chargers are currently the No. 6 seed after the Colts’ loss. Los Angeles clinches a playoff spot with a win or tie with Las Vegas. 

Remaining schedule: at Raiders 

Las Vegas Raiders

What to know: The Raiders can clinch a playoff berth with a win or tie against the Chargers on Sunday night. 

Remaining schedule: vs. Chargers

Pittsburgh Steelers

What to know: The Steelers beat the Ravens to move into the No. 8 spot in the AFC. Pittsburgh will clinch a playoff spot if the Raiders or Chargers don’t tie Sunday night. 

Indianapolis Colts

What to know: The Colts were eliminated from the playoffs with their loss to the Jaguars and the Steelers’ win over the Ravens. 

Miami Dolphins

What to know: The Dolphins are eliminated from the playoffs and their first-round draft pick goes to the Eagles in the 2022 NFL Draft

Remaining schedule: vs. Patriots

Baltimore Ravens

What to know: The Ravens were eliminated from the playoffs with Sunday’s loss to the Steelers. 

Cleveland Browns 

What to know: The Browns are eliminated from the playoffs and are in line for the No. 13 pick in the NFL Draft.

Denver Broncos

What to know: The Broncos are eliminated from the playoffs and are in line for the No. 9 pick in the NFL Draft. 

New York Jets

What to know: The Jets are eliminated from the playoffs and are in line for the No. 5 overall pick in the NFL Draft.

Remaining schedule: at Bills

Houston Texans

What to know: The Texans are eliminated from the playoffs and have clinched the No. 3 pick in the NFL Draft. 

Jacksonville Jaguars

What to know: The Jaguars are eliminated from the playoffs and clinched the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft. 

NFC

z-Packers

13

4

.765

4-2

9-3

x-Rams

12

4

.750

3-2

8-3

y-Buccaneers

12

4

.750

3-2

7-4

y-Cowboys

12

5

.706

6-0

10-2

x-Cardinals

11

5

.688

4-1

7-4

49ers

9

7

.563

1-4

6-5

x-Eagles

9

8

.529

3-3

7-5

Saints

8

8

.500

3-2

6-5

e-Vikings

8

9

.471

4-2

6-6

e-Falcons

7

9

.438

2-3

4-7

e-Washington

7

10

.412

2-4

6-6

e-Seahawks

6

10

.375

2-3

3-8

e-Bears

6

11

.353

2-4

4-8

e-Panthers

5

11

.313

2-3

3-8

e-Giants

4

13

.235

1-5

3-9

e-Lions

3

13

1

.206

2-4

3-9

x-clinched playoff berth

y-clinched division title

z-clinched home-field advantage

e-eliminated from playoffs

Green Bay Packers

What to know: The Packers clinched the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

Los Angeles Rams

What to know: The Rams clinch the NFC West with a win over the 49ers in Week 18 or a Cardinals loss to the Seahawks. They are currently the No. 2 seed in the NFC, holding a head-to-head tiebreaker to the Buccaneers. 

Remaining schedule: vs. 49ers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

What to know: The Buccaneers are the No. 3 seed in the NFC.

Remaining schedule: vs. Panthers

Dallas Cowboys

What to know: The Cowboys are the No. 4 seed in the NFC, but have already clinched the NFC East. They can clinch the No. 2 seed in the conference, but need some help.

Arizona Cardinals

What to know: The Cardinals will win the NFC West with a win and a Rams loss in Week 18. Arizona can’t be lower than the No. 5 seed in the playoffs. 

Remaining schedule: vs. Seahawks

San Francisco 49ers

What to know: The 49ers clinch a playoff spot with a win over the Rams in Week 18 or a Saints loss to the Falcons. San Francisco is currently the No. 6 seed in the NFC, holding the head-to-head tiebreaker over Philadelphia. 

Remaining schedule: at Rams

Philadelphia Eagles

What to know: The Eagles clinched a playoff berth, but are still the No. 7 seed since the 49ers own the head-to-head tiebreaker. They are still in play for the No. 6 seed in the conference if the 49ers lose and the Saints win Sunday. 

New Orleans Saints

What to know: The Saints are still alive in the NFC playoff race. New Orleans is one game behind Philadelphia and San Francisco for the final playoff spot as the No. 8 seed, but lose the head-to-head tiebreaker to the Eagles. 

The Saints clinch a playoff berth with a win over the Falcons and a 49ers loss to the Rams. 

Remaining schedule: at Falcons

Minnesota Vikings

What to know: The Vikings are eliminated from the playoffs and are in line for the No. 12 pick in the NFL Draft.

Atlanta Falcons

What to know: The Falcons are eliminated from the playoffs and are in line for the No. 11 pick in the NFL Draft. 

Remaining schedule: vs. Saints

Washington Football Team 

What to know: Washington is eliminated from the playoffs and in line for the No. 10 pick in the NFL Draft.

Chicago Bears

What to know: The Bears are eliminated from playoff contention. Chicago would be in line for the No. 7 pick in the draft, but that is going to the New York Giants from a draft day trade. 

Seattle Seahawks

What to know: The Seahawks are eliminated from the playoffs and would own the No. 8 pick in the draft, but that goes to the Jets thanks to the Jamal Adams trade. 

Remaining schedule: at Cardinals

Carolina Panthers

What to know: The Panthers are eliminated from the postseason. Carolina currently has the No. 6 pick in the draft.  

Remaining schedule: at Buccaneers

New York Giants 

What to know: The Giants are eliminated from the playoffs and currently own the No. 4 pick in the draft.

Detroit Lions

What to know: The Lions are eliminated from the playoffs and have clinched the No. 2 pick in the draft. 

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