NFL Playoff Picture 2021: Week 15 Wild-Card Odds and Super Bowl Standings

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistDecember 13, 2021

NFL Playoff Picture 2021: Week 15 Wild-Card Odds and Super Bowl Standings

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    Jeff Dean/Associated Press

    The Indianapolis Colts improved their spot in the AFC wild-card race by sitting at home in Week 14.

    Indianapolis was the main beneficiary of the losses suffered by the seven-win teams in the AFC, going from outside of the three wild-card spots to the No. 6 seed.

    The flips made inside the AFC wild-card race Sunday show how quickly one franchise can lose or gain its playoff standing in the tight competitions.

    After Sunday, five AFC teams sit at 7-6 and five NFC teams owns 6-7 records. That means few teams have been eliminated and that the final four weeks of the regular season could have a ton of chaos as it relates to the postseason races.

    Even the hunt for the No. 1 seed in each conference is tight. The top three AFC teams are 9-4, and the Green Bay Packers could move level with the Arizona Cardinals at 10-3 if the Los Angeles Rams beat the NFC West leader Monday.

Super Bowl Odds

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    Mark LoMoglio/Associated Press

    Tampa Bay: +500 (bet $100 to win $500)

    Kansas City: +550

    Green Bay: +650

    New England: +750

    Arizona: +850

    Buffalo: +1200

    Los Angeles Rams: +1200

    Dallas: +1200

    Tennessee: +2000

    Los Angeles Chargers: +2000

    Indianapolis: +3000

    Baltimore: +3500

    Cleveland: +3500

    San Francisco: +3500

    Cincinnati: +5000

    Philadelphia: +8000

    Denver: +8000

    Minnesota: +8000

    New Orleans: +15000

    Washington: +15000

    Seattle: +15000

    Pittsburgh: +15000

    Las Vegas: +20000

    Miami: +20000

    Atlanta: +50000

    New York Giants: +100000

    Chicago: +100000

    Carolina: +100000


    Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

AFC Playoff Picture

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    Matt Durisko/Associated Press

    Division Leaders

    1. New England (9-4)

    2. Tennessee (9-4)

    3. Kansas City (9-4)

    4. Baltimore (8-5)


    The top three seeds in the AFC are safe on top of their respective divisions. 

    The New England Patriots have a two-game lead and a head-to-head tiebreaker over the Buffalo Bills. The Tennessee Titans have a similar level of control over the Colts, and the Kansas City Chiefs can gain more separation in the AFC West with a win over the Los Angeles Chargers on Thursday night.

    The Baltimore Ravens are in a bit of trouble after their Week 14 loss to the Cleveland Browns. Their remaining schedule sees them face the Green Bay Packers, Cincinnati Bengals, Los Angeles Rams and Pittsburgh Steelers.

    If Baltimore beats Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, it should feel safe about its spot atop the division because it would have as many tiebreakers as it can earn.


    Wild-Card Race

    5. Los Angeles Chargers (8-5)

    6. Indianapolis (7-6)

    7. Buffalo (7-6)

    8. Cleveland (7-6)

    9. Cincinnati (7-6)

    10. Denver (7-6)

    11. Pittsburgh (6-6-1)

    12. Las Vegas (6-7)

    13. Miami (6-7)


    The Colts are in an ideal position to claim one of the three wild-card spots.

    Indianapolis moved level with four other teams at 7-6 because of results across the NFL on Sunday. It jumped into the No. 6 seed through its superior AFC record and head-to-head win over Buffalo. 

    The Colts are not in the clear yet since they have to play the Patriots at home in Week 15, but if they pull off a victory, they could gain a bit of separation in the wild-card race.

    The game that precedes the Colts and Patriots on Saturday night could act as a wild-card elimination game, with the Cleveland Browns taking on the Las Vegas Raiders.

    Another potential elimination game takes place Sunday when the Denver Broncos host to the Cincinnati Bengals.

    The Pittsburgh Steelers have a chance to emerge from Week 15 as a true wild-card contender, but to do so, they need to beat the Tennessee Titans. If the Steelers lose, the door could be open for the Miami Dolphins to jump up from 13th place since they play the New York Jets.

    Some clarity will be gained from the two head-to-head wild-card matchups, but there is still going to be a crowded list of postseason hopefuls going into Week 16.

NFC Playoff Picture

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    Aaron Gash/Associated Press

    Division Leaders

    1. Arizona (10-2)

    2. Green Bay (10-3)

    3. Tampa Bay (10-3)

    4. Dallas (9-4)


    If the Arizona Cardinals lose to the Los Angeles Rams on Monday night, we could have a four-week free-for-all for the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

    The Green Bay Packers would benefit the most from a Cardinals loss since they handed the NFC West leader one of its two defeats. Green Bay also owns a better conference record than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which put it at No. 2 after Sunday.

    Green Bay finishes with Baltimore, Cleveland, the Minnesota Vikings and Detroit Lions. If it goes 3-1 or 4-0 in those games, it could lock down the No. 1 seed.

    Arizona has a rough stretch against Indianapolis, the Dallas Cowboys and Seattle Seahawks in which it could slip up, while Tampa Bay has an easy finish against the New Orleans Saints, New York Jets and Carolina Panthers twice.

    If Tampa Bay breaks its deadlock with the Packers, the path to the Super Bowl in the NFC could run through Florida.


    Wild-Card Race

    5. Los Angeles Rams (8-4)

    6. San Francisco (7-6)

    7. Washington (6-7)

    8. Minnesota (6-7)

    9. Philadelphia (6-7)

    10. Atlanta (6-7)

    11. New Orleans (6-7)

    12. Carolina (5-8)

    13. Seattle (5-8)

    14. New York Giants (4-9)

    15. Chicago (4-9)


    The NFC West should get three teams into the postseason.

    The San Francisco 49ers' win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday put them a full game ahead of the other wild-card contenders at six wins.

    The Los Angeles Rams will still be in a good position to land a wild-card berth even if they lose to Arizona on Monday.

    Washington, Minnesota and the Philadelphia Eagles are the three realistic candidates to fill the No. 7 seed. The Football Team and Eagles play twice in the next three weeks. Philadelphia owns head-to-head tiebreakers over Atlanta, New Orleans and Carolina, so until it drops below the NFC South teams, the wild-card race is limited to three 6-7 squads.

    Minnesota plays the Bears twice in Weeks 15 and 18, but those games sandwich matchups against the Rams and Packers. A 2-2 record down the stretch might not be good enough for Mike Zimmer's team to gain the No. 7 seed, especially if Philadelphia or Washington sweeps those teams' head-to-head series.


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