Back in week 8, it looked like anybody could be in the playoffs. There were no great teams, and everyone had at least 2 losses. After week 13, the picture is a little more in focus.
First, the AFC. The AFC East and North were likely decided last week, as the Patriots blew out the Jets, and the Steelers beat the Ravens in a motherfucking smashmouth slugfest. Both winners are most likely set for first-round byes, and both losers are most likely locked in to the wild card spots. The South and West divisions aren’t as clear. This could be the first year the Colts miss the playoffs since 2001, when they were still a part of the AFC East. They’re one game behind the Jaguars, who have an easier 4 games ahead of them. The AFC West could go a couple of ways. The Chiefs are currently in first, but if anybody overtakes them, it will probably be the Raiders, who are tied with the Chargers at one game back, and own the tiebreaker.
In the NFC, the Falcons look set to run away with the #1 overall seed, with the Saints close behind to snag the first wild card. It helps that the NFC South played the NFC West; that’s 4 extra wins for the Falcons, Saints, and Bucs. Speaking of the West, the Rams are in first, and own the tiebreaker over the Seahawks. That leaves the Bears and Packers in the North, and the Giants and Eagles in the East. Two teams will win their divisions, and one will snag the final wild card. My money’s on the Eagles and Packers to take their divisions, and the Bears to sneak in with the final wild card.