Good Evening
Good Evening

NFL Week 17 playoff scenarios: Who's in with a win, who needs help?

Andrew Luck #12 of the Indianapolis Colts throws

Andrew Luck #12 of the Indianapolis Colts throws a touchdown pass in the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, Nov.11, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Credit: Getty Images/Andy Lyons

With three playoff spots still up for grabs, and plenty of playoff positioning at stake, Sunday shapes up to be an exciting regular-season finale in the NFL. There are 11 games that have playoff implications. 

Let's start with the final game, Indianapolis at Tennessee. The winner of this prime-time meeting secures the final AFC playoff spot and the sixth seed … unless Houston loses at home to Jacksonville earlier in the day, opening the door for the Colts or Titans to win the AFC South. The Texans clinch the division with a win or tie, or even a Colts-Titans tie. Houston still has a shot at a first-round bye, but it would need New England to lose to the Jets. The Patriots clinch a first-round bye with a win, and would be the No. 1 seed if the Chiefs and Chargers both lost. Kansas City just needs to beat Oakland to secure home-field advantage throughout. The Chargers need to beat the Broncos and have the Chiefs lose to get the top spot. 

That leaves the fourth seed. Baltimore will be AFC North champs with a win over Cleveland or a loss by Pittsburgh. The Steelers get in with a win and a Ravens loss. Pittsburgh also gets in with a win and an Indianapolis-Tennessee tie. 

As for the NFC, New Orleans already has locked up home-field advantage. The Rams will clinch a first-round bye with a win over the 49ers, but a loss coupled with a Chicago win in Minnesota would mean the Bears get the second seed. The Vikings are in with a win (or a tie), and could jump to the fifth seed if Seattle loses to Arizona. The Seahawks likely will visit Dallas, the fourth seed, in the wild-card round. If the Bears beat the Vikings, that would open the door for the defending champion Eagles to make the playoffs. A win by Philadelphia over Washington and a Minnesota loss means the Eagles are in. If Philly loses or ties, the Vikings would advance with a loss. 

— With AP

New York Sports