NFL Playoff Scenarios: Who has to do What in Week 17?

Week 16 in the NFL cleared up many of the playoff questions. Seven out of the eight divisions have been decided. The final two wild card spots will come down to week 17. All week 17 games in the NFL are on New Year’s Eve next week. Here is a look at how the playoffs stack up through Week 16 Sunday.


AFC East

New England Patriots – AFC East Champions. With the Jacksonville Jaguars loss, the Patriots can be no worse than the two-seed. The Patriots can wrap up home field throughout the playoffs with a win next week or a Pittsburgh Steelers loss. The Steelers have two games remaining.

Buffalo Bills – The Bills can get in with a win and the following:

The Baltimore Ravens lose to the Cincinnati Bengals

The Tennessee Titans lose or tie against the Jacksonville Jaguars plus the Los Angeles Chargers lose or tie against the Oakland Raiders.

The Bills have not made the playoffs since 1999.

AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers – AFC North Champions. The Steelers can get a first-round bye with a win. They can have home field advantage throughout the playoffs with a win in weeks 16, 17, and a Patriots loss in week 17.

Baltimore Ravens – This team is currently the fifth seed in the NFL AFC Playoffs. A win in week 17 and they lock that position. A loss to the Bengals in week 17 and they would need some help.

The Titans would need to lose to the Jaguars or the Bills would have to lose to the Dolphins.

AFC South

Jacksonville Jaguars – AFC South Champions. Additionally, this team is playoff bound for the first time in 10 years.

Tennessee Titans – Still control their own destiny. Thus, a victory over the Jaguars on Sunday and they will be in the playoffs. However, a loss in week 17 and they will need some help.

A Titans loss coupled with a Chargers win and a Ravens win eliminates the Titans.

AFC West

Kansas City Chiefs – AFC West Champions. They have also secured the 4th seed.

Los Angeles Chargers – With their win at the New York Jets on Sunday, they stayed alive in the AFC race. However, the following needs to happen for them to get in:

The Chargers need to win and the Titans need to lose to Jaguars. In addition, the Ravens need to defeat the Bengals. On the other hand, a loss to the Oakland Raiders eliminates the Chargers.

Those are the NFL Scenarios heading into Christmas Day and NFL Week 17.

Below are the NFC Scenarios for Christmas Day and Week 17 in the NFL.


NFC East

Philadelphia Eagles – NFC East Champions. Additionally, they can secure home-field throughout with a win on Monday night against the Oakland Raiders.

NFC North

Minnesota Vikings – NFC North Champions. Can secure the two-seed with a win in week 17 against the Chicago Bears. Can also secure home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with a win and an Eagles loss in their final two games (Oakland Raiders and Dallas Cowboys).

NFC South

New Orleans Saints – Team has clinched a playoff berth with their win on Sunday. Furthermore, they can clinch the NFC South with a win or a Carolina Panthers loss to the Atlanta Falcons.

Carolina Panthers – Have clinched a playoff spot. Moreover, they can win the NFC South with a win against the Atlanta Falcons and a New Orleans Saints loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.


Atlanta Falcons – The Falcons defeat the Panthers in week 17 and they are in. However, if the Falcons lose they will need the Seattle Seahawks to also lose to stay in the race

NFC West

Los Angeles Rams – NFC West Champions. Hence, this team will host a playoff game in Los Angeles for the first time since 1985.

Seattle Seahawks – They are the only team still alive by virtue of their victory over the Dallas Cowboys. Thus, they secure the sixth seed with a win in week 17 against the Arizona Cardinals and a Falcons loss to the Panthers.

So, there you have all of your 2017 NFL Playoff scenarios heading into week 17. Is your team still alive? If so, are they involved in one of these scenarios?

Follow Sean for all your NFL news and notes on You can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @NFLWBLZ.



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