NFL playoff picture: Updated AFC, NFC standings for Week 16 | Sporting News

Week 16 is here, and with fewer than two weeks remaining in the 2019 regular season, the NFL playoff picture is almost complete based on the current AFC and NFC standings.

Here is an updated look at what each conference field would look like now, what teams are still in contention and what teams should already be thinking about the offseason.

MORE: Clinching scenarios for Week 16

NFL standings for Week 16


Lamar Jackson

AFC playoff picture

Who would be in?

1. Ravens, champions, AFC North (12-2) — The Ravens had little trouble against the Jets in Week 15. With one more win or Patriots loss, they will secure the top seed and home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs, sitting a game (plus a head-to-head tiebreaker) up on the Patriots. Who’s left to play: at Browns, vs. Steelers

2. Patriots, first place, AFC East (11-3) — The Patriots clinched a playoff berth by beating the Bengals in Week 15. They will win the division with a win in one of the final two games. Going 2-0 will allow them to keep at least this seed. Going 1-1 puts them in danger of falling behind the Chiefs. Who’s left to play: vs. Bills, vs. Dolphins | Patriots seeding scenarios

3. Chiefs, champions, AFC West (10-4) — The Chiefs beat the Broncos in Week 15 to keep pressure on the Patriots, the team ahead of them that they beat. They need to keep winning and get some big-time help to move up to first-round bye position. Who’s left to play: at Bears, vs. Chargers | Chiefs seeding scenarios

4. Texans, first place, AFC South (9-5) —The Texans beat the Titans in Week 15 to stay in first place in the division. They’re in great shape to win the South now, as they get the Titans at home in Week 17. They did beat the Patriots and Chiefs, but it will be hard for them to move up because they’re a full game behind No. 3. Who’s left to play: at Buccaneers, vs. Titans

5. Bills, second place, AFC East (10-4) — The Bills clinched a playoff berth with their Week 15 win over the Steelers. To win the division, they need to stay hot and win out, including at New England in Week 16. On top of that, they also need the Dolphins to beat the Patriots in Week 17. While that scenario seems unlikely, Buffalo at least can fall back on this top wild card. Who’s left to play: at Patriots, vs. Jets

6. Steelers, second place, AFC North (8-6) — The Steelers stay in this spot despite their Week 15 loss to the Bills because they hold the conference-record tiebreaker over the Titans. They still need to worry about a few behind them, and the best way to alleviate those concerns is to win out. Who’s left to play: at Jets, at Ravens

Who can get there?

7. Titans (8-6); 8. Browns (6-8); 10. Raiders (6-8)

The Titans suffered a tough loss to the Texans in Week 15 to hurt both their division and wild-card chances. The Browns and Raiders both lost in Week 15, but the Steelers’ loss allowed them to stave off elimination until Sunday of Week 16.

Who’s out?

10. Colts (6-8); 11. Broncos (5-9); 12. Jaguars (5-9); 13. Chargers (5-9); 14. Jets (5-9); 15. Dolphins (3-11); 16. Bengals (1-13)

The Colts were eliminated with their Week 15 Monday loss at the Saints. The Broncos were eliminated with their Week 15 Sunday loss at the Chiefs. The Jaguars were eliminated with their Week 14 loss to the Chargers, who also were eliminated by the Steelers’ win.

The Jets were eliminated by both the Steelers and Titans winning in Week 14. The Dolphins were eliminated in Week 13. The Bengals are still headed toward the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

(Getty Images)

Drew Brees

NFC playoff picture

Who would be in?

1. Seahawks, first place, NFC West (11-3) — The Seahawks got a big win over the Panthers in Week 15. With it, they clinched a playoff spot thanks to the Rams losing to the Cowboys, and they jumped the 49ers again in the division race thanks to a head-to-head tiebreaker. The division is still set to come down to the teams’ Week 17 rematch in Seattle. They have the No. 1 seed for now over the Packers, too, because of the common-games tiebreaker. Who’s left to play: vs. Cardinals, vs. 49ers | Seahawks seeding scenarios

2. Packers, first place, NFC North (11-3) — The Packers maintained their one-game and head-to-head tiebreaker lead over the Vikings in the division after beating the Bears in Week 15. They jumped the losing Saints for No. 2 last week thanks to a better conference record. The Packers clinched a playoff berth with the Rams losing to the Cowboys. They still have work to do in the division to secure the title, just a win in one of their final two games. Who’s left to play: at Vikings, at Lions | Packers seeding scenarios

3. Saints, champions, NFC South (11-3) — The Saints got back on track against the reeling Colts in Week 15 and can win out with a favorable remaining schedule. They then need the Packers to lose and hope the Seahawks, whom they beat, win the NFC West to get the No. 1 seed. For now they have a worst conference record than both division leaders ahead of them. Who’s left to play: at Titans, at Panthers | Saints seeding scenarios

4. Cowboys, first place, NFC East (7-7) — The Cowboys jumped back over the Eagles in Week 15 by beating the Rams. They hold the head-to-head tiebreaker going into the rematch with Philadelphia in Week 16. That game is set to determine the division champion, however, with each team having an easier division matchup at home to close in Week 17. The Cowboys would take the division by sweeping the season series  The Eagles still need to win in Week 17 should they beat the Cowboys. Who’s left to play: at Eagles, vs. Redskins.

5. 49ers, second place, NFC West (11-3) — The 49ers were upset by the Falcons in Week 15, dropping them down from No. 1 and giving the Seahawks the division lead with two games left, including against each other. The 49ers clinched a playoff spot in Week 15, though, thanks to the Rams’ loss to the Cowboys. If they can win out and take back the division, they would still end up with the No. 1 seed because of wins over both the Packers and Saints. Who’s left to play: vs. Rams, at Seahawks | 49ers seeding scenarios

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6. Vikings, second place, NFC North (10-4)  —The Vikings took care of business against the Chargers in Week 15 to keep place with the Packers and, just as important, dampen the hopes of the losing Rams in the wild-card race while eliminating the Bears. They need only one more win or a Rams loss to secure at least this seed. They need to win out, including against the Packers in Week 16, to have a chance to take the division. Who’s left to play: vs. Packers, vs. Bears

Who can get there?

7. Rams (8-6); 8. Eagles (7-7)

The Rams, after losing to the Cowboys in Week 15, now need to win out and hope the Vikings lose out to get the final NFC wild card by virtue of a better conference record. The Eagles’ playoff chances are down to winning the NFC East over the Cowboys, which means they need to beat Dallas at home in Week 16.

MORE: Updated NFL Draft order for 2020

Who’s out?

10. Buccaneers (7-7); 11. Falcons (5-9); 12. Panthers (5-9); 13. Cardinals (4-9-1); 14. Lions (3-10-1); 15. Redskins (3-11); 16. Giants (3-11)

The Bucs pushed the Lions further down in Week 15, but they already were eliminated from a wild card. The Panthers and Redskins, before losing again in Week 15, were eliminated from contention with their respective losses to the Falcons and the Packers in Week 14.

The Lions, Falcons, Giants and Cardinals were eliminated with respective losses to the Bears, Saints, Packers and Rams in Week 13.

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