AFC Playoff Picture: Week 15

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Here is where the AFC stands heading into week 15 action. I will give you the most plausible scenarios for each team to clinch next week as well as the rest of the season.

Standings

Team

Seed

Record

AFC

DEN-y

1

11-2

7-2

NE

2

10-3

7-2

CIN

3

9-4

7-3

IND-x

4

8-5

6-3

KC

5

10-3

6-3

BAL

6

7-6

6-4

y- clinched playoff berth

x- clinched division

Clinching Scenarios for week 15

Denver Broncos

It has been one hell of a record setting ride for our Broncos hasn't it? After their 5th victory in 6 games, the Broncos are in firm control of their playoff destiny. They have already clinched a playoff berth. The Broncos can clinch a 1st round Bye in week 15 with a win, a Chiefs loss, and a Bengals loss.

Magic Number to Clinch AFC West: 2 (any combination of wins and Chiefs losses)

Magic Number to Clinch #1 seed: 3 (any combination of wins and/or Patriots losses that add up to 3)

New England Patriots

Pats fans everywhere were ready to jump off a ledge when TE Rob Gronkowski suffered what is most likely a season ending injury:

Gronkhit2_medium

With an assist from the NFL's inconsistent enforcement of pass interference, the Patriots pulled off yet another improbable come from behind victory and remain in prime position to earn a playoff bye. Belichick and co. can clinch the AFC East with a win this Sunday against the Dolphins.

Magic Number to clinch playoff berth: 1

Magic Number to clinch division: 1 (win or Dolphins loss)

Magic Number to clinch #2 seed: 3 (any combination of wins and/or Bengals losses that add up to 3)

Magic Number to clinch #1 seed: 4 (any combination of wins or Broncos losses that add up to 4)

Cincinnati Bengals

Took firm control of the #3 seed with a dominating victory over Indianapolis. They are still in play for a first round bye due to their head to head tiebreaker over the Patriots and have to be most heartbroken by the events in Foxboro yesterday. Cincinnati can clinch a playoff berth with a win and a Miami loss next week.

Magic Number to clinch division: 2 (any combination of wins and/or Ravens losses that add up to 2)

Indianapolis Colts

The Colts have already clinched their division by virtue of the AFC South being terrible. They will either be the #3 seed or the #4 seed. Though they can leapfrog into the #3 position, it is a complicated scenario that involves multiple teams.

They probably have the least to play for ending the season as they can finish no lower than #4.

Kansas City Chiefs

Our AFC West foes can clinch a playoff berth next week with a victory in Oakland OR with losses by both Baltimore and Miami.

Magic Number to clinch AFC West: 5 (two wins and three Broncos losses OR three wins and two Broncos losses)

Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens cannot clinch a playoff berth next week.

X
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