Monday, January 24, 2022

2022 NFL playoff picture: 49ers steal spot, Steelers likely in, Colts out after wild Week 18

2022 NFL playoff picture: 49ers steal spot, Steelers likely in, Colts out after wild Week 18

Here’s an up-to-date look at the NFL playoff race

Indianapolis Colts v Jacksonville Jaguars
Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

The Jaguars have been eliminated from playoff contention for nearly a month now, but they still managed to turn the AFC playoff race upside down on Sunday when they pulled off a shocking 26-11 upset of the Indianapolis Colts

The loss by the Colts combined with the Steelers‘ overtime win over the Ravens means that Indianapolis is officially eliminated from postseason play. By beating the Colts, the Jaguars did a huge favor for the Steelers, who will now make the playoffs as long as the Chargers-Raiders game doesn’t end in a tie.

Although the Colts are out, the AFC South will have one playoff team and it’s the No. 1 overall seed. The Titans clinched the top seed with a 28-25 win over the Texans

In the NFC, the 49ers clinched a playoff berth after pulling off a wild comeback against the Rams. The Niners trailed 17-0 at one point, but fought back to win the game 27-24 in overtime. 

With the in mind, here’s a look at the current playoff standings heading into the Sunday night finale between the Chargers and Rams. We’ve also listed the playoff scenarios for each team that can still get in. 

AFC playoff standings

Still alive and likely in

Steelers (9-7-1): Not only are the Steelers still alive, but they’re almost certainly going to make the playoffs. As long as the Chargers-Raiders game doesn’t end in a tie, the Steelers will clinch the seventh seed in the AFC, which means they would be traveling to Kansas City in the wild-card round. 

NFC playoff standings

Wild card round matchups (based on current standings)

AFC (teams in bold have clinched their seed)

(7) Raiders at (2) Chiefs

(6) Chargers at (3) Bills

(5) Patriots at (4) Bengals

Bye: Titans

NFC (All seeds clinched)

(7) Eagles at (2) Buccaneers

(6) 49ers at (3) Cowboys

(5) Cardinals at (4) Rams

Bye: Packers

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