The NFL playoff picture has become a lot clearer over the past 24 hours. The Kansas City Chiefs have clinched a playoff spot when they eliminated the Denver Broncos from playoff contention. The Chiefs will be either the No. 2 seed or the No. 5 seed. The No. 3 and 4 seeds are all set in the AFC field.
A Chiefs win and a Raiders loss means the Chiefs win the AFC West and will be the No. 2 seed in the AFC with a first round bye. This is the best case scenario because the Chiefs really want that first round bye and a home game at Arrowhead. The Raiders play the Broncos without Derek Carr. The Broncos are eliminated but .... it’s Matt McGloin.
If the Chiefs lose to the Chargers or the Raiders beat the Broncos, the Chiefs will be the No. 5 or 6 seed and go on the road on Wild Card weekend. They’d still be in but no home game and playing on Wild Card weekend would put a dent in their Super Bowl hopes.
A Chiefs loss combined with a Dolphins win and the Chiefs would fall to the No. 6 seed. That would have them going to Pittsburgh. Um, no thanks. I would rather be the No. 5 seed and go to Houston than go to Pittsburgh.
The Raiders can still earn the No. 1 seed with a win and a Patriots loss.
Current AFC playoff picture
- Patriots (13-2)
- Raiders (12-3)
- Steelers (10-5)
- Texans (9-6)
- Chiefs (11-4)
- Dolphins (10-5)