The NFL Wild Card race is heating up as approach the last two weeks. Several teams are still in play for a wild card spot and here are some potential scenarios.
— Phins.com (@Phinscom) December 23, 2020
NFL Wild Card Race:
#1. Cleveland Browns
The Browns find themselves in a very favorable position coming into Week 16. While they can’t clinch a playoff spot alone with a win, there are scenarios in play to help them.
Firstly, if the Browns win and either the Dolphins or Ravens lose or tie the Browns are in. Otherwise, if the Browns win and the Colts lose they’re also in.
Another possible scenario includes the Browns tying with either the Ravens or Dolphins losing their games. The scene is set for the Browns to make their first playoff appearance since 2002!
In front of them stand the 1-13 Jets, fresh off an upset of the Rams. However, this should be a cakewalk for Cleveland. With some help, they could finally give their fans something to cheer about.
Additionally, a win and a Steelers loss would mean the Browns could straight up win the division in Week 17. Wouldn’t that be something?
CLEVELAND BROWNS (10-4) (at New York Jets (1-13), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)
Cleveland clinches playoff berth with:
CLE win + BAL loss or tie OR
CLE win + MIA loss or tie OR
CLE win + IND loss OR
CLE tie + BAL loss OR
CLE tie + MIA loss
— BrownsFreak51 (@BrownsFreak51) December 22, 2020
#2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay controls their own destiny in Week 16. Simply winning or tying would mean that they clinched a playoff spot.
Brady and Co. will go up against the Lions in Week 16. While the Lions have looked feisty at times, the Bucs are simply a better football team.
They should be able to take care of business and make it back to the postseason. However, in the case that they don’t a Chicago Bears loss or tie would also give them a berth.
#3. Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals are in an incredibly tight race for the final wild card spot in the NFC with the Chicago Bears. The Bears own the tie-breaker over the Cardinals with either a better conference record or a better record in common games.
Thus, the Cardinals need to ensure they preserve their one game lead over Chicago. A big way to do that would be to win outright in Week 16.
A Cardinals win against the 49ers and a Bears loss or tie gives them the playoff spot, or a Cardinals tie and a Bears loss would do the same. A win would also mean that even if Chicago wins, Arizona would responsible for their playoffs hope as they would simply need to win in Week 17 to guarantee that playoff spot.
The Cardinals 8-6 currently hold the seventh and final spot in the NFC playoff race and face the Los Angeles Rams 9-5 in the final regular-season game. https://t.co/Hmvf7ReuDJ
— SF Examiner (@sfexaminer) December 24, 2020
Remaining Scenarios in NFL Wild Card Race
Other teams can also confirm major standings in the NFL playoffs this week. The Colts can clinch with a win and a Ravens loss or tie, a Dolphins loss or tie, or a tie and Ravens or Dolphins loss.
Meanwhile, the Steelers clinch the AFC North with a win, a Browns loss, or a tie and a Browns tie. The Titans can also lock up the AFC South with a win and a Colts loss. Otherwise, they can clinch a playoff spot with a win, a Dolphins loss, a Ravens loss, or a tie and a Ravens tie.
The Los Angeles Rams will clinch their own playoff spot with a win or tie, a Bears loss or tie, or a Cardinals win or tie. Further, they must hope that Seattle loses as a win would guarantee the Seahawks the NFC West title.
Additionally, the Washington Football Team can clinch the NFC East with a win and a Giants loss or tie or a tie and a Giants loss and a Cowboys-Eagles tie.
NFL Playoffs chances after 10,000 simulations
LV 0.4% pic.twitter.com/XZ1mp4j80O
— Vegas Insiders (@vegas_insiders) December 23, 2020