AFC No. 1 seed, three wild cards at stake


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Here’s how the NFL playoff picture looks with Week 18 underway:


yz – 1. Tennessee Titans (12-5), AFC South champions: Back-to-back division titlists also secured AFC’s bye and home-field advantage with Sunday’s win over the Houston Texans. Week 7 defeat of Chiefs gives Titans the all-important tiebreaker. Remaining schedule: TBD

y – 2. Kansas City Chiefs (12-5), AFC West champions: Pulled out a win against Denver Broncos on Saturday afternoon but Texans didn’t help them with an upset Sunday. K.C. will play on wild-card weekend for first time since 2017. Remaining schedule: TBD

CLINCHING SCENARIOS: What remaining teams need to do to reach postseason

MORE: What will be the biggest surprises in Week 18 of NFL’s regular season?

x – 3. Buffalo Bills (10-6), AFC East leaders: They’ll win the division with a victory because their AFC East record (4-1) trumps New England’s. Remaining schedule: vs. Jets

y – 4. Cincinnati Bengals (10-7), AFC North champions: Division winners for the first time since 2015, but Kansas City’s victory Saturday meant Cincy couldn’t snag first-round bye. Bengals would be third seed if Bills and Patriots both lose. Now focus turns to winning first playoff game in three decades. Remaining schedule: TBD

x – 5. New England Patriots (10-6), wild card No. 1: Restored 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. Chiefs’ win Saturday means New England can no longer earn No. 1 seed. Remaining schedule: at Dolphins

6. Los Angeles Chargers (9-7), wild card No. 2: If they win or tie Sunday night, they clinch a wild card. Do Bolts and Raiders trade kneeldowns for 70 minutes? Remaining schedule: at Raiders

7. Las Vegas Raiders (9-7), wild card No. 3: If they win or tie Sunday night, they clinch a wild card. Do Bolts and Raiders trade kneeldowns for 70 minutes? Remaining schedule: vs. Chargers

8. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-7-1), out of playoff field: In a truly bizarre day, they likely benefit most from the Indianapolis Colts’ shocking loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Pittsburgh’s overtime win in Baltimore eliminated the Ravens and Colts and almost clinched a wild-card spot for the Steelers. As long as the Chargers-Raiders game doesn’t end in a tie, Pittsburgh is in. Why? If the Bolts, Raiders and Steelers are deadlocked at 9-7-1, the Chargers get a wild card by virtue of a 1-0-1 record against Las Vegas plus their Week 11 defeat of Pittsburgh. The Raiders’ Week 2 win in the Steel City would convey the postseason final berth to the Silver and Black. Remaining schedule: TBD


yz – 1. Green Bay Packers (13-4), NFC North champions: They’re tied for league’s best record, but 9-3 NFC mark bests Bucs by a win. That…

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