Here is a quick look at the AFC playoff picture and Wild Card race, as well as storylines heading into week 13 of the 2016 NFL season.
The end of the 2016 NFL regular season is almost a little over a month away. That means that the playoffs are right around the corner. That also means that the excitement of football has just begun. As teams try to close out their seasons, many are still fighting for a coveted playoff spot. Some teams are on cruise control while some are thinking about next season while others are fighting for their playoff lives. Let’s take a look at how the divisions in the AFC breakdown and what the playoff hunt looks like going into week 13.
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Once again, the New England Patriots have almost locked up the AFC East. In the next week or two, they will more than likely clinch their playoff berth. The Miami Dolphins are second in the division and second in the Wild Card. At this point in the season, it doesn’t look like they’re going to be able to catch New England. In fact, they may even lose their Wild Card spot.
The Oakland Raiders are first in the AFC West with a solid record and a season that has surprised many. Their division is much tougher with the Kansas City Chiefs right on their heels and the Denver Broncos following close behind them. For the next four weeks, this may be the most interesting division in the NFL. It’s possible that all three of these teams could make the playoffs. To add to the drama, they all play each other head to head before the season’s done. With the race being so close, those games will mean everything.
The Baltimore Ravens are barely holding onto their division. They are tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers, but the Ravens have the tiebreaker having beaten the Steelers once. They still have to play the Steelers one more time and they also have to play the Patriots. The playoff picture in this division is a coin toss at this point.
The Houston Texans are leading the AFC South by a half game. The Tennessee Titans are still in the hunt. The Texans should still take the division. They don’t face another team with a winning record until the last game against Tennessee, who may not have a winning record at that time. As long as they can maintain, they should be looking at their second straight AFC South Division Championship. The Titans still have to face the Broncos and the Chiefs. Neither of those matchups looks good for the Titans. The Titans could easily drop three of their last four games.
Teams by Seed
New England Patriots (9-2)
Oakland Raiders (9-2)
Baltimore Ravens (6-5)
Houston Texans (6-5)
Kansas City Chiefs (8-3)
Miami Dolphins (7-4)
In the Hunt
Denver Broncos (7-4)
Pittsburgh Steelers (6-5)
Tennessee Titans (6-6)
Who do you think will get in and who do you think will end up on the outside looking in on the playoff picture?