This Is The Current AFC Playoff Picture, And What Each Team Needs To Happen To Make It

The NFL Season is coming to an end with only four regular-season games left.  Only six teams can make it in from the AFC, but there are still 15 teams in total who still have a chance to make the playoffs. With a win on Monday Night Football, the Steelers remain the top seed in the AFC while the Patriots are nipping at their heels. For some teams every week is a playoff game because one loss could be the difference between being in or on the outside looking in.

To fully understand how each playoff ranking is decided here is an explanation of the six postseason participants are seeded:
1.) The division champion with the best record.
2.) The division champion with the second-best record.
3.) The division champion with the third-best record.
4.) The division champion with the fourth-best record.
5.) The Wild Card club with the best record.
6.) The Wild Card club with the second-best record.

None of the teams have clinched a playoff seed yet, but if the playoffs were to end today, these six teams would make the AFC playoffs. 

AFC Playoffs:
1.) Pittsburgh Steelers (10-2): 1st in AFC North, own the tiebreaker over the Patriots because of their strength of victory.
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Ravens (7-5), vs. Patriots (10-2), at Texans (4-8), vs. Browns (0-12)
According to these postseason percentages, the Steelers have higher than a 99 percent chance of making the playoffs. The Steelers will play the Patriots in Week 15 which may decide the number one seed.

2.) New England Patriots (10-2): 1st AFC East
REMAINING OPPONENTS: at Dolphins (5-7), at Steelers (9-2), vs. Bills (6-6), vs. Jets (5-7)
The Patriots remain behind the Steelers due to NFL tiebreaker rules but have a chance to be the one seed when they play the Steelers at home against the Steelers Week 15.

3.) Tennessee Titans (8-4): 1st AFC South, own tiebreaker over Jaguars
REMAINING OPPONENTS: at Cardinals (5-7), at 49ers (2-10), vs. Rams (9-3), vs. Jaguars (8-4)
The Titans have the same record as the Jaguars but own the tiebreaker since they won in Week 2. They don't have an easy final two games and Week 17 may be the deciding factor in who wins the AFC South.

4.) Kansas City Chiefs (6-6): 1st AFC West, own tie breaker over the Chargers and Raiders
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Raiders (6-6), vs. Chargers (6-6), vs. Dolphins (5-7), at Broncos (3-9)
The Chiefs have lost six of seven games and have seen their division lead slip away. The Chiefs season ends with three games against division opponents, but their playoffs start this week against the Raiders. They control their own destiny with a schedule that should favor them. 

5.) Jacksonville Jaguars (8-4): Wild Card
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Seahawks (8-4), vs. Texans (4-8), at 49ers (2-10), at Titans (8-4)
The Jaguars are in the wild card spot because they lost to the Titans in Week 2, but have a chance for revenge in Week 17. With eight wins, the Jaguars are in great position for a playoff spot. 

6.) Baltimore Ravens (7-5): Wild Card
REMAINING OPPONENTS: at Steelers (10-2), at Browns (0-12), vs. Colts (3-9), vs. Bengals (5-6)
A three-game winning streak for the Ravens may end with a tough matchup against a division rival, the Steelers. After the Steelers, the road gets much easier for this Ravens team who is playing well.

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These nine teams are still technically in the hunt for the playoffs and the percentages next to them are their chances of making the playoffs at this current moment. 

In The Hunt:
7.) Los Angeles Chargers (6-6) - 25% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Redskins (5-7), at Chiefs (6-6), at Jets (5-7), vs. Raiders (6-6)
The Chargers started the season 0-4, but have won six of eight games and have a realistic chance of making the playoffs. If they win out, they are in and win the AFC West. Currently, the Chargers have the tiebreaker over the Raiders and will play them in Week 17, which may decide the division. The Chargers also own the tiebreaker over the Bills who they beat in Week 11.

8.) Buffalo Bills (6-6) - 16% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Colts (3-9), vs. Dolphins (5-7), at Patriots (10-2), at Dolphins (5-7)
The Bills basically need to win out, which won't be easy with the Patriots in Week 16 and Nathan Peterman possibly starting at quarterback.The Bills own the tiebreaker over the Chiefs and Raiders due to wins earlier this season.

9.) Oakland Raiders (6-6) - 20% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: at Chiefs (6-6), vs. Cowboys (6-6), at Eagles (10-2), at Chargers (6-6)
The Raiders road to the playoffs won't be an easy one considering they are playing four teams in the playoff hunt. They get a struggling Chiefs team on Sunday and with a win and a Chargers loss, the Raiders would be sitting in first place in the division. The Raiders own the tiebreaker over the Chiefs, but since the Chiefs beat the Chargers and the Chargers beat the Raiders, this is the reason why the Raiders are here at nine. The Raiders do play the Chargers in Week 17 which could be the deciding factor for a playoff spot.

For the teams below, they need to win out and essentially "hit the lottery" to have any chance of making the playoffs.

10.) New York Jets (5-7) - 1% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: at Broncos (3-9), at Saints (9-3), vs. Chargers (6-6), at Patriots (10-2)

11.) Miami Dolphins (5-7)- 3% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Patriots (10-2), at Bills (6-6), at Chiefs (6-6), vs. Bills (6-6)

12.) Cincinnati Bengals (5-7)- 1% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Bears (3-9), at Vikings (10-2), vs. Lions (6-6), at Ravens (7-5)

13.) Houston Texans (4-8) - Less than 1% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. 49ers (2-10), at Jaguars (8-4), vs. Steelers (10-2), at Colts (3-9)

14.) Indianapolis Colts (3-9) - Less than 1% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: at Bills (6-6), vs. Broncos (3-9), at Ravens (7-5), vs. Texans (4-8)

15.) Denver Broncos (3-9)- Less than 1% chance to make the playoffs
REMAINING OPPONENTS: vs. Jets (5-7), at Colts (3-9), at Redskins (5-7), vs. Chiefs (6-6)

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16.) Cleveland Browns (0-12)

Mitchell Renz is the Senior Writer & On-Air Host at Chat Sports check out his article archive and live videos on Chat Sports Facebook page. Please follow him on Twitter @MitchellRenz365. 

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Related Topics: Patriots Playoffs, AFC Standings, AFC Playoff Standings, NFL Playoffs, AFC West, playoffs, AFC Playoffs, Steelers playoffs, AFC East, AFC Playoff picture, AFC North