NFL Playoff Implications for each game in Week 17

NFL Playoff Implications for each game this Week

Let’s take a look at the playoff scenarios for Week 17 in the NFL. Four teams in the NFC have been eliminated: Rams, Bears, Cardinals, and Falcons. In the AFC, the Broncos, Texans, Browns and Colts are now eliminated from playoff contention.

Week 17

Thursday, Dec. 29

Dallas (11-4) at Tennessee (7-8)

Dallas is in the playoffs at 11-4 and can win the NFC East if the Eagles (13-2) lose out and the Cowboys win both games. Dallas finishes with a game against Washington, while the Eagles faced the Giants and Saints.

The Titans are in second in the AFC South and 10th overall in the AFC. They do own the tiebreaker over Pittsburgh. They will need to win out including defeating Jacksonville in Week 18.

Sunday, January 1

Arizona (4-11) at Atlanta (5-10), 1pmET

Both teams have been eliminated from the playoffs.

Chicago (3-12) at Detroit (7-8), 1pmET

The Bears have been eliminated.

Detroit is ranked ninth in the NFC at 7-8 and is second in the NF North with a tiebreaker over Green Bay. However, a loss to the Bears along with a win by Washington and the Lions are out. They must beat the Bears or have a Washington loss and they will be alive in Week 18.

Jacksonville (7-8) at Houston (2-12), 1pmET

The Texans are out of the playoff picture.

Jacksonville is fourth in the AFC right now at 7-8 and is first in the AFC South, thanks to owning the head-to-head tiebreaker over Tennessee. However, they play the Titans in Week 18. So, it’s possible that they can win in Week 17 and still get the No. 7 seed with a lot of help if they lose to the Titans in Week 18. They can lose to Houston and still get in by beating the Titans in Week 18. If the Titans lose to the Cowboys, it would still come down to Week 18 if the Jags win.

Denver (4-11) at Kansas City (12-3)

The Broncos are out of the playoff picture. Jerry Rossburg takes over for Nathaniel Hackett at head coach.

Kansas City clinched the AFC West for the seventh straight time. They are now looking to get the top seed in the AFC. They are tired with Buffalo for the AFC’s top record at 12-3. If the Bills win their final two games, they get the first seed. The Chiefs need a Buffalo loss and to beat the Raiders and Broncos to gain the top seed.

Miami (8-7) at New England (7-8), 1pmET

The No. 7 (AFC) Dolphins can clinch a playoff berth with a win and a Jets loss or tie. They can also clinch with a tie and a Jets loss and a Pittsburgh loss or tie.

New England is in the eighth spot in the AFC. They do have the tiebreaker over the Jets on head-to-head matchups and on Tennessee and Pittsburgh on conference records. Throw all that out the window if they lose to Miami (they are done). A win and it comes down to Week 18 at Buffalo.

Indianapolis (4-10) at NY Giants (8-6-1), 1pmET

The Colts are out of the playoff race.

The Giants can earn a playoff berth with a win. There are several other scenarios where they can tie again and still make it. A Seattle and Washington loss also helps get them in. Or a Washington, Detroit and Green Bay loss gets them in. Or a Seattle, Detroit and Green Bay loss. They end their season at Philadelphia in Week 18.

New Orleans (6-9) at Philadelphia (13-2), 1pmET

The Saints are still alive but need a win over the No. 1 Eagles to stay alive. A Tampa Bay win eliminates them as well.

The Eagles clinched a playoff berth but after losing to Dallas, the Eagles need just one win to clinch the NFC East or with a Dallas loss or tie.

Carolina (6-9) at Tampa Bay (7-8), 1pmET

Carolina has to win this game. A loss to Tamp Bay and they are done.

Tampa Bay just needs to win this game and they will clinch the NFC South at 8-8 in Week 17. A loss won’t eliminate the Bucs, but then Carolina would play New Orleans in Week 18, who could be eliminated this week. Win and you’re in.

Cleveland (6-9) at Washington (7-7-1), 1pmET

Cleveland is out of playoff contention.

Washington can clinch a playoff berth with a win over the Browns and a Seattle loss and Detroit loss and Green Bay loss or tie. But they could be eliminated with a loss to the Browns and if Green Bay and Detroit wins.

San Francisco (11-4) at Las Vegas (6-9), 4:05pmET

The 49ers clinched the NFC West. They have a longshot at winning the NFC, but will need help.

The Raiders have a long shot but a loss here ends their chances of making the playoffs. They end the season with a home game against the Chiefs. So basically, they need to beat the 49ers and the Chiefs to have a shot and finish at 8-9.

NY Jets (7-8) at Seattle (7-8), 4:05pmET

The Jets are in ninth place in the AFC and fourth in the AFC East. The good news is that they have a tiebreaker over Tennessee in common games and Pittsburgh on conference record. But a loss in Seattle and they are out of contention.

Seattle could lose here and still be alive, but if Washington wins and the Seahawks lose, they are done. The Seahawks are 8th in the NFC and have the tiebreaker over Detroit on head-to-head.

Minnesota (12-3) at Green Bay (7-8), 4:25pmET

Minnesota has clinched the NFC North and has a long shot at winning the NFC.

Green Bay is 10th in the NFC. They need to win here, but a loss to the Vikings along with a Detroit win would knock them out. Or a loss to the Vikings and a Washington win also knocks them out. If they win, it will come down to Detroit in Week 18 and they might need help as well.

LA Rams (5-10) at LA Chargers (9-6), 4:25pmET

The Rams are out of playoff contention.

The Chargers are in if they get a win and some help. They end the season with a road game against Denver.

Pittsburgh (7-8) at Baltimore (10-5), 8:20pmET

Pittsburgh has to win out, but even a loss doesn’t eliminate them unless the Jets or Patriots win, and then they are done. They host Cleveland to end their season.

Baltimore has clinched a playoff berth. Now, they’d like to win the AFC North, but that will take a win over Pittsburgh and they face 11-4 Cincinnati next week on the road in Week 18. That could decide the division.

Monday, January 2

Buffalo (12-3) at Cincinnati (11-4)

The Bills have clinched the AFC East. They can clinch the AFC with a win and a Kansas City loss.

The Bengals win the AFC North with a win and a Baltimore loss or tie. They have a chance at the top seed but will need some help.


Author Profile
Ben Hayes

Ben has been a sports writer for over 35 years, dabbling in college and pro basketball, college and pro football, baseball, college lacrosse, minor league baseball and even college gymnastics. He's also been involved in the gaming industry for nearly 30 years and has been looking to beat the books since he was 13! Ben has had great success in handicapping college football, the NFL, college basketball, the NBA and MLB for 27+ years. His Twitter handle is @BenHayesWAW