NFL Week 15 AFC Playoff Scenarios: What Can Be Clinched This Weekend and Teams Still in Hunt

By Michael Vesci
Dec. 15, 2018

With just three weeks remaining in the NFL regular season, it is all or nothing for teams looking to make that final playoff push. On the flip side, it is also time for teams who surged out of the gate to begin punching their tickets to the NFL playoffs next month. In a shorter than usual article, we will take a look at what AFC teams currently in the playoff picture can lock up this weekend and their remaining schedule as well as those teams still in the playoff hunt and their remaining schedules.

American Football Conference (AFC)

#1 Kansas City Chiefs (11-3)

Last Game: Thursday vs. LAC (28-29 L)

Next Game: 12/23 @ SEA, 8:20 PM EST

Clinching Scenarios (Before Week 15 Game Occurred):

Clinch AFC West + First-Round Bye w/

1. Week 15 win

Clinch No. 1 seed + home-field advantage throughout playoffs w/

1. Win + NE loss/tie

Remaining Schedule: @ SEA, vs. OAK

#2 New England Patriots (9-4)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) vs. MIA (33-34 L)

Next Game: 12/16 @ PIT, 4:25 PM EST

Clinching Scenarios (For Week 15):

Clinch AFC East w/

1. Win + MIA loss/tie OR

2. Tie + MIA loss


Clinch Playoff Berth w/

1. Win + TEN loss/tie OR

2. Tie + BAL loss + TEN loss + IND loss/tie

Remaining Schedule: vs. BUF, vs. NYJ

#3 Houston Texans (9-4)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) vs. IND (21-24 L)

Next Game: 12/15 @ NYJ, 4:30 PM EST

Clinching Scenarios (For Week 15):

Clinch AFC South w/

1. Win + IND loss/tie + TEN loss/tie OR

2. Tie + IND loss + TEN loss

Clinch Playoff Berth w/
1. Win + MIA loss/tie + PIT loss OR
2. Win + MIA loss/tie + BAL loss/tie OR
3. Tie + IND loss/tie + BAL loss + MIA loss OR
4. Tie + IND loss/tie + PIT loss + BAL loss + MIA tie OR
5. Tie + IND loss/tie + PIT loss + BAL win + MIA loss OR
6. Tie + TEN loss/tie + BAL loss + MIA loss OR
7. Tie + TEN loss/tie + PIT loss + BAL loss + MIA tie OR
8. Tie + TEN loss/tie + PIT loss + BAL win + MIA loss

Remaining Schedule: @ PHI, vs. JAX

#4 Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5-1)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) @ OAK (21-24 L)

Next Game: 12/16 vs. NE, 4:25 PM EST

Clinching Scenarios (Heading Into Week 15): None

Remaining Schedule: @ NO, vs. CIN

#5 Los Angeles Chargers (11-3)

Last Game: Thursday @ KC (29-28 W) *Win clinched LAC playoff berth*

Next Game: 12/22 vs. BAL, 8:20 PM EST

Clinching Scenarios (Before Week 15 Game Occurred):

Clinch Playoff Berth w/

1. Win/tie OR

2. MIA loss/tie + PIT loss OR
3. MIA loss/tie + BAL loss/tie OR
4. MIA loss/tie + IND loss/tie + TEN loss/tie OR
5. PIT loss + IND loss/tie + TEN loss/tie OR
6. BAL loss/tie + IND loss or tie + TEN loss/tie

Remaining Schedule: vs. BAL, @ DEN

#6 Baltimore Ravens (7-6)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) @ KC (24-27 L)

Next Game: 12/16 vs. TB, 1:00 PM EST

Clinching Scenarios (Heading Into Week 15): None

Remaining Schedule: @ LAC, vs. CLE

In The Hunt

#7 Indianapolis Colts (7-6)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) @ HOU (24-21 W)

Next Game: 12/16 vs. DAL, 1:00 PM EST

Remaining Schedule: vs. NYG, @ TEN

#8 Miami Dolphins (7-6)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) vs. NE (34-33 W)

Next Game: 12/16 vs. MIN, 1:00 PM EST

Remaining Schedule: vs. JAX, @ BUF

#9 Tennessee Titans (7-6)

Last Game: Thursday (12/6) vs. JAX (30-9 W)

Next Game: 12/16 @ NYG, 1:00 PM EST

Remaining Schedule: vs. WAS, vs. IND

#10 Denver Broncos (6-7)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) @ SF (14-20 L)

Next Game: 12/15 vs. CLE, 8:20 PM EST

Remaining Schedule: @ OAK, vs. LAC

#11 Cleveland Browns (5-7-1)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) vs. CAR (26-20 W)

Next Game: 12/15 @ DEN, 8:20 PM EST

Remaining Schedule: vs. CIN, @ BAL

#12 Cincinnati Bengals (5-8)

Last Game: Sunday (12/9) @ LAC (21-26 L)

Next Game: 12/16 vs. OAK, 1:00 PM EST

Remaining Schedule: @ CLE, @ PIT

Eliminated From Playoff Contention

Buffalo Bills (4-9)

Jacksonville Jaguars (4-9)

New York Jets (4-9)

Oakland Raiders (3-10)

Questions or comments? Email www.mtv1999@juno.com and follow @mtvhottakes on Facebook to know when new stories are posted.