NFL playoff picture after Week 17: Final puzzle pieces falling into place in AFC, NFC – USA TODAY

Here’s how the NFL playoff picture looks with Week 17’s Sunday afternoon action complete:


y – 1. Tennessee Titans (11-5), AFC South champions: Huge win Sunday, Tennessee now a back-to-back division titlist while moving to the top of the conference standings due to Kansas City’s loss. Week 7 defeat of the Chiefs means a Tennessee victory in Week 18 – or K.C. loss – will give the Titans the AFC’s bye and home-field advantage. Remaining schedule: at Texans

y – 2. Kansas City Chiefs (11-5), AFC West champions: They lost their eight-game winning streak in Cincinnati and control of first place in the AFC. K.C. needs win in Week 18 plus a Tennessee loss to earn No. 1 seed for the third time in four seasons. Remaining schedule: at Broncos

y – 3. Cincinnati Bengals (10-6), AFC North champions: Division winners for the first time since 2015, they’ve still got a shot at the conference’s top seed … before focus turns to winning first playoff game in three decades. Remaining schedule: at Browns

x – 4. Buffalo Bills (10-6), AFC East leaders: By eliminating the Atlanta Falcons and benefiting from Baltimore’s loss to the Rams, Buffalo is headed to the playoffs for the third consecutive season. The Bills trail Cincinnati due to an inferior record in AFC games (6-5) but will win the division with a victory next week because their AFC East record (4-1) trumps New England’s. Remaining schedule: vs. Jets

NFL PLAYOFFS: More on teams that clinched in Week 17

x – 5. New England Patriots (10-6), wild card No. 1: A trouncing of Jacksonville paired with Miami’s loss restores Pats to postseason after one-year, post-Tom Brady hiatus. Beat the Fins in Week 18 and hope the New York Jets can ambush Buffalo, and Patriots would reclaim AFC East throne. Remaining schedule: at Dolphins

6. Indianapolis Colts (9-7), wild card No. 2: Loss to Las Vegas cost Indy ability to clinch playoff berth Sunday and also knocked them out of running for AFC South crown. But they have to like their Week 18 assignment. Remaining schedule: at Jaguars

7. Los Angeles Chargers (9-7), wild card No. 3: They eliminated the Denver Broncos, Cleveland Browns and Miami Dolphins with Sunday’s win, but Bolts can’t afford to slip up in the regular-season finale. Remaining schedule: at Raiders

8. Las Vegas Raiders (9-7), out of playoff field: Sunday’s escape from the Colts was huge, it not enough to launch Silver and Black into projected playoff field. But Raiders are officially into the Super Bowl tournament by beating Bolts at the Death Star in Week 18. Remaining schedule: vs. Chargers

9. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7-1), out of playoff field: They remain on life support but Monday night’s game with Cleveland – probably QB Ben Roethlisberger’s final appearance at Heinz Field – is a must-win affair. Remaining schedule: vs. Browns, at Ravens 

10. Baltimore Ravens (8-8), out of playoff field: Losers of five in a row, their mathematical viability has dwindled to almost nothing. Remaining schedule: vs. Steelers 


y – 1. Green Bay Packers (12-3), NFC North champions: They own league’s best record and remain on track to secure No. 1 seed for second straight year. Triumph on Sunday night over Minnesota wraps it up. Remaining schedule: vs. Vikings, at Lions

x – 2. Los Angeles Rams (12-4), NFC West leaders: Couldn’t quite put a bow on division despite victory in Baltimore but are only one win (or Arizona loss) from beginning their quest to play Super Bowl 56 at SoFi Stadium … at SoFi Stadium. Remaining schedule: vs. 49ers

y – 3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (12-4), NFC South champions: They managed to beat Jets and move up to third seed while simultaneously appearing to unravel amid more Antonio Brown shenanigans. Remaining schedule: vs. Panthers

y – 4. Dallas Cowboys (11-5), NFC East champions: Relatively disastrous loss to Cardinals likely cost them shot at NFC’s No. 1 seed. Remaining schedule: at Eagles

x – 5. Arizona Cardinals (11-5), wild card No. 1: Timely win over Cowboys means Cards still have chance to win NFC West if Rams cooperate with Week 18 loss. Remaining schedule: vs. Seahawks

6. San Francisco 49ers (9-7), wild card No. 2: Win in Week 18 and they’re in. Remaining schedule: at Rams 

7. Philadelphia Eagles (9-7), wild card No. 3: Win in Week 18 – or a Vikings loss Sunday night – and they’re in. Remaining schedule: vs. Cowboys

8. New Orleans Saints (8-8), out of playoff field: Need win and Week 18 help to advance. Week 11 loss to Philly doesn’t help. Remaining schedule: at Falcons

9. Minnesota Vikings (7-8), out of playoff field: Loss at Lambeau on Sunday night ends their season. Remaining schedule: at Packers, vs. Bears

x – clinched berth

y – clinched division


Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis.