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NFL GAME DAY DISCUSSION NFL Week 18 and Playoff Scenarios

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jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
AFC Week 18 Playoff Scenarios

Interesting to note how Buffalo winning next week helps the three other division winners, as the Bills lose the conference tiebreakers in the #1-4 seeding - while the Patriots would win those same tiebreakers.


11-5 Tennessee Titans (favored by 10½ at home vs Houston)
- Can be as high as the #1 seed, or as low as #4
- Clinches #1 seed with a win
- Clinches #1 seed with losses by the Chiefs, Bengals and Pats; or losses by the Chiefs and Bengals, plus Buffalo wins.
- Clinches #2 seed with Chiefs loss, plus either Pats lose, Bengals lose, or Buffalo wins.
- Clinches #2 seed with Bengals loss, plus either Pats lose or Buffalo wins.
- Eliminated from #1 seed with a loss, plus either Bengals win, or Chiefs win, or Pats win/Bills lose.


11-5 Kansas City Chiefs (favored by 10 at Denver)
- Can be as high as the #1 seed, or as low as #4
- #1 seed with a win, plus Titans lose.
- At least #2 seed with a win; or with losses by the Bengals, and the Pats, and the Bills
- End up at #4 with a loss, plus Bengals win, plus either Pats or Bills win.


10-6 Cincinnati Bengals (3-point underdogs at Cleveland)
- Can finish anywhere from #1 to #4
- Need four things to happen to be #1: a win, plus losses by both the Titans and Chiefs, plus either Pats lose or Buffalo wins.
- Clinch #2 seed with a win, plus Titans lose, plus either Chiefs lose, Pats lose, or Buffalo wins.
- Clinch #3 seed with a win, plus either Chiefs lose, Titans lose, Pats lose, or Buffalo wins; also if Bills and Pats both lose.
- Become #4 seed with a loss, plus either Pats or Bills win. Also end up at #4 with wins by the Pats, Chiefs and Titans, plus a Buffalo loss.


10-6 Buffalo Bills (17 point home favorites vs the Jets)
- Cannot be the #1 seed; could be anywhere from #2 to #7
- Become the #2 seed with a win, plus losses by both KC and Cincy.
- Clinch the #3 seed with a win, plus a loss by either KC or Cincy.
- Clinch #4 spot with either a win, or a Pats loss.
- Finish #5 at best with a loss, plus a Pats win.
- Finish #7 with a loss, plus Pats win, plus Colts win.


10-6 New England Patriots (5½ point favorites at Miami)
- Can finish anywhere from #1 to #7
- Become the #1 seed with a win, plus losses by the Chiefs, Titans and Bills.
- Clinch #2 seed with a win plus Bills loss, plus either a Chiefs or Titans loss.
- Get the #3 seed with a win, plus a Buffalo loss.
- Can finish no higher than #5 with a loss, plus a Buffalo win.
- Can finish no higher than #6 with a loss, plus either the Colts win or Raiders win.
- End up at #7 with a loss, plus both the Colts and Raiders win.


9-7 Indianapolis Colts (favored by 15 at Jacksonville)
- Can finish #5, #6, #7, or miss the playoffs
- Become #5 with a win, plus the Raiders lose, plus either the Pats or Bills lose.
- Clinch at least #6 seed with a win, plus one of the Bills, Patriots or Raiders lose.
- Clinch a playoff spot with a win. Also clinch with a Chargers loss plus various combinations of Pats, Steelers, Ravens, Bengals losing.
- Eliminated from #5 seed if Raiders win, or both Pats and Bills win.
- Eliminated from #6 seed with a loss, or if Raiders, Pats and Bills all win.
- Eliminated from playoffs with a loss plus Chargers win; or loss and two Steelers wins; or loss plus Pats win, Steelers beat Browns and Ravens beat Steelers; or loss plus Bengals, Pats and Ravens all win.


9-7 Los Angeles Chargers (3-point favorites at Raiders)
- Can be #5, #6, #7 or miss playoffs
- Become #5 seed with a win, plus Pats lose, Bills lose and Colts lose.
- Clinch #6 seed with a win, plus Colts lose; or with a win, plus Pats and Bills both lose.
- Clinch a playoff spot with a win.
- Eliminated form #5 spot if either Dolphins, Colts or Bills win.
- Eliminated from #6 seed if Colts win, plus either Bills win or Pats lose.
- Eliminated from the playoffs with a loss.


9-7 Las Vegas Raiders (3-point home underdogs vs Chargers)
- Can be #5, #6, #7 or miss playoffs
- Become #5 seed with a win, plus either the Pats or Bills lose.
- Clinch at least #6 seed with a win over the Chargers.
- Also clinch a playoff spot with a Colts loss combined with a Steelers loss to either the Browns or Ravens.
- Eliminated from #5 spot if the Pats and Bills both win.
- Eliminated from #6 seed with a loss to the Chargers.
- Eliminated from playoffs with a loss, plus the Colts win; or with a loss and two Steelers wins.


8-8 Ravens (4½ point home favorites vs Pittsburgh)
- Can only make the playoffs as the #7 seed
- Only path to the postseason is to win, plus losses by the Chargers, Colts and Dolphins, plus Cleveland loses one of their final two games.


7-7-1 Steelers (2 point home favorites vs Cleveland; 4½ point underdogs at Baltimore)
- Can only make the playoffs as the #7 seed
- Need to win both remaining games, plus Colts lose to Jaguars, plus Raiders-Chargers not end in a tie.
 

1960Pats

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The way I see the AFC is...
1 - Tennessee (12-5)
2 - KC (12-5)
3 - Cincy (11-6)
4 - Bills (11-6)
5 - NE (11-6)
6 - Indy (10-7)
7 - LAC (10-7)

And the NFC is...
1 - GB (14-3)
2 - LAR (13-4)
3 - TB (13-4)
4 - Dal (12-5)
5 - Ariz (12-5)
6 - SF (9-8)
7 - Phi (9-8)
NO is also 9-8 and may be in there. I'm not sure how a 3 way tie works with SF beating Philly head-to-head and no games between the others.
 

everlong

Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal
Not that there's any chance KC, Tenn and Cinn all lose but it's crazy the Pats still have any shot at the #1 seed. On the flipside Indy winning, Vegas winning and the Pats losing and falling to the 7 seed isn't that far fetched. I think they win, stay the 5 seed and play the Bills.
 

gitgronked82

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
The way I see the AFC is...
1 - Tennessee (12-5)
2 - KC (12-5)
3 - Cincy (11-6)
4 - Bills (11-6)
5 - NE (11-6)
6 - Indy (10-7)
7 - LAC (10-7)

And the NFC is...
1 - GB (14-3)
2 - LAR (13-4)
3 - TB (13-4)
4 - Dal (12-5)
5 - Ariz (12-5)
6 - SF (9-8)
7 - Phi (9-8)
NO is also 9-8 and may be in there. I'm not sure how a 3 way tie works with SF beating Philly head-to-head and no games between the others.

So NE at Buffalo? If so it will be good to see how NE responds.
Browns are slightly favored vs bengals.

If all favorites win week 18, it’s pats @bengals
 

gitgronked82

Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job
While it’s entirely reasonable to think the bengals beat the browns, here’s the playoff picture if all favorites win.
1641218052838.png
 

everlong

Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal
The NFC hosted the 8PM Saturday night game last year so I assume that will be the AFC slot this year. However there is also the Monday night WC game this year which could switch things up.

Given the market sizes and popularity I have to imagine Dallas gets one of these two prime time slot. Especially if the matchup somehow involves the 49ers or Eagles.

If KC vs LAC happens I think that will be the other game. They'll 100% want all that fire power on display. If the Raiders beat the Chargers then that opens up either Bengals vs Colts or Bills vs Patriots. I think that's a coin toss. NE is by far the most popular (and unpopular) team nationally and has the biggest market. On the other hand with Burrow, Chase and Taylor you have three of the biggest young stars.
 

VectorPrime

Pro Bowl Player
Kind of sucks that week 18 is shaping up to be largely worthless. Because, shockingly, removing the bye for the 2nd seed has absolutely killed a ton of the competitive motivation at the end of the season like everyone expected.
 

jmt57

Moderator
Staff member
NFC Week 18 Playoff Scenarios

To me the NFC has been relatively boring this year, with five teams never really challenged for a playoff spot the entire season - leaving two playoff berths open for mediocre teams. The conference is very top heavy with those five clubs; in some cases, such as Dallas, it is somewhat difficult to gauge how good they really are; they are 5-0 vs the rest of the NFC East while losing five games to better quality opponents.

Six NFC teams are in; the only remaining open spot is between the 49ers and Saints. The most intriguing game is the Rams vs 49ers in the late afternoon slot.


13-3 Green Bay Packers (11-point favorites at Detroit)
- Packers have already clinched the number one seed


12-4 Los Angeles Rams (5½-point home favorites vs 49ers)
- Can finish anywhere from #2 to #5; most likely either #2 or #5
- Clinch #2 seed with a win; also back in as #2 with losses by the Bucs, Cardinals and Cowboys.
- Clinch at least #3 seed with a Cardinals loss, plus either a Bucs or Cowboys loss.
- Could end up as #4 seed with a loss, Cardinals loss, and both Bucs and Cowboys win.
- Become #5 seed with a loss, plus a Cardinals win.


12-4 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-point home favorite vs Carolina)
- Can be the #2, #3, or #4 seed; most likely will be #3
- Need a win coupled with a Rams loss to become the #2 seed.
- Finish no worse than #3 with either a win, or a Cowboys loss.
- Become #4 seed with a loss, a Dallas win, and the Rams and Cardinals both lose.


11-5 Dallas Cowboys (3-point favorites at Philadelphia)
- Can be #2, #3 or #4 seed; most likely #4
- Need a win plus Bucs, Rams and Cardinals all lose to become #2.
- Need a win, plus Rams and Cardinals both lose to be the #3 seed.
- Any other scenario and Dallas is the #4 seed.


11-5 Arizona Cardinals (6½-point home favorites vs Seattle)
- Can be the #2, #3 or #5 seed only; most likely will be #5
- Clinch the #2 seed with a win, plus losses by both the Rams and the Bucs.
- Become the #3 seed with a win, plus a Rams loss.
- Get the #5 seed with all other scenarios.


9-7 San Francisco 49ers (5½-point underdogs at LA Rams)
- Can be the #6 seed, #7 seed, or miss playoffs entirely
- Clinch #6 seed with a win over the Rams
- Back in to #6 seed (despite a loss) if the Saints and Eagles both lose.
- Clinch a playoff spot and at least #7 seed with a Saints loss.
- Eliminated from the postseason with a loss, plus the Saints win.


9-7 Philadelphia Eagles (3-point home underdogs Saturday night, vs Dallas)
- Will become either the #6 seed or #7 seed
- Clinch #6 seed with a win, plus 49ers lose.
- Back in as a #6 seed if 49ers lose and Saints win.
- Get the #7 seed if the 49ers win; or with a loss, plus the Saints lose.


8-8 New Orleans Saints (4½-point favorites at Atlanta)
- Can miss the playoffs, or make it as a #7 seed
- Need a win, plus a 49ers loss to clinch the #7 seed.
- Are eliminated with either a loss, or a 49ers win.
 

Deus Irae

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The Titans may be getting a big piece of their offensive puzzle back on the field for their postseason run.

Running back Derrick Henry has been rehabbing his broken foot for the last couple of months and that process has progressed to the point that he could rejoin the team at practice this week. Titans head coach Mike Vrabel said Henry will do some work today and the team will ponder whether to open his window to return from injured reserve for the next couple of days.

“We’ve discussed it. We’ll see where it goes. We’ll probably make a decision mid-week,” Vrabel said, via Titans247.



Derrick Henry could return to practice this week - ProFootballTalk
 

Steve:Section 102

A lion isn't concerned with the opinion of sheep
PatsFans.com Supporter
I don't remember the exact scenario, but the year they played Carolina in the Super Bowl, they needed help to get the one seed and got it.
 

Palm Beach Pats Fan

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Henry getting this extended rest the second half of the season could be bad news for the rest of the AFC, if he shakes off any rust.

I keep telling myself, though,

the QB is Tannehill
the QB is Tannehill
the QB is Tannehill
 

ArchAngel007

Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract
Henry getting this extended rest the second half of the season could be bad news for the rest of the AFC, if he shakes off any rust.

I keep telling myself, though,

the QB is Tannehill
the QB is Tannehill
the QB is Tannehill
He's serviceable with Henry and AJ Brown healthy. Think Jimmy G with 2019 49ers
 

PATSYLICIOUS

Pro Bowl Player
I don't remember the exact scenario, but the year they played Carolina in the Super Bowl, they needed help to get the one seed and got it.

the chiefs lost in week 16 to drop to 12-3, that gave us the inside track to the 1 seed since we just had 2 losses. Im not sure who would have gotten it if kc didn’t lose that game, probably them because i too remember needing some help that year
 

Bill Lee

What, me worry?
PatsFans.com Supporter
While it’s entirely reasonable to think the bengals beat the browns, here’s the playoff picture if all favorites win.
Thanks for the tip ( ESPN.com's 2021 NFL Playoff Machine - Simulate Matchups and Scenarios ).

Personally I think the Bengals will beat the Browns which (along with other predictions) moves them up to #3 and we end up with BUF #4 playing NE #5.

Kind of sucks that week 18 is shaping up to be largely worthless. Because, shockingly, removing the bye for the 2nd seed has absolutely killed a ton of the competitive motivation at the end of the season like everyone expected.
How dare you think of your selfish desire for competitive football!

These days it's all about the NFL owners making more money for themselves.
 

Ring 6

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The way I see the AFC is...
1 - Tennessee (12-5)
2 - KC (12-5)
3 - Cincy (11-6)
4 - Bills (11-6)
5 - NE (11-6)
6 - Indy (10-7)
7 - LAC (10-7)

And the NFC is...
1 - GB (14-3)
2 - LAR (13-4)
3 - TB (13-4)
4 - Dal (12-5)
5 - Ariz (12-5)
6 - SF (9-8)
7 - Phi (9-8)
NO is also 9-8 and may be in there. I'm not sure how a 3 way tie works with SF beating Philly head-to-head and no games between the others.
Saints are in 9ers are out if both finish 9-8
 

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