NFL: Denver Broncos at San Diego Chargers
Home » Blog » AFC playoff picture: Chiefs, Chargers brawl for top seed

AFC playoff picture: Chiefs, Chargers brawl for top seed

The AFC playoff picture has come down to two teams as we approach the end of the regular season: The Kansas City Chiefs ans the Los Angeles Chargers. Thursday night gave us one of the more entertaining games of the season. Yours truly was in the building for the contest, and while the Arrowhead Stadium crowd was deafening, it was the Los Angeles Chargers who made the loudest impact, winning 29-28 on the final play of the game.

With the win, the Chargers are now tied with the Kansas City Chiefs for first place in the AFC West at 11-3. Each team beat the other in its own building, with the Chiefs having won 38-28 in Week 1. Now, with two weeks left on the docket, both teams face the real possibilities of hosting every playoff game its involved in, or being the fifth seed and playing on the road throughout.


Want $250 to bet on the AFC?

Sign up here!


For now, the Chiefs still control their own destiny. Kansas City has both the better divisional record and holds the tiebreaker for common opponents. No matter how things shake out, the Chargers must have the better record outright to win the West. A tie with any record would leave the Chiefs with the better mark.

Moving forward, Kansas City and Los Angeles both have challenging games in Week 16. The Chiefs are on the road to take on the Seattle Seahawks come Sunday night. Seattle can clinch a playoff berth by beating the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, but would still be playing to put away the fifth seed. Los Angeles is hosting the Baltimore Ravens, a team that will be desperate to keep itself in the playoff hunt. Depending on the result between the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers, Baltimore might be trying to either enter first place or hold onto it in the AFC North.

As we enter Week 15’s Sunday slate, here’s how the AFC playoff picture looks right now:

1. Kansas City Chiefs (11-3)
2. Houston Texans (10-4)
3. New England Patriots (9-4)
4. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5-1)
5. Los Angeles Chargers (11-3)
6. Baltimore Ravens (7-6)

If New England is able to go into Heinz Field and knock off the Steelers, it will move back into the second seed with Houston falling into the third slot. The Patriots finish the season with home games against the New York Jets and Buffalo Bills, so it’s likely that a win against Pittsburgh would cinch a first-round bye.


Read: NFC Playoff Picture – Bears, Cowboys Try to Clinch Divisions


Meanwhile, the Steelers have to beat the Patriots or face the likelihood of falling completely out of the playoff picture. Pittsburgh would go to 7-6-1 with a defeat and has to play the New Orleans Saints at the Superdome in Week 16. Additionally, Baltimore has the Tampa Bay Buccaneers coming into town this weekend, meaning that a Pittsburgh loss coupled with the expected Ravens win would put Baltimore into the fourth seed and the Steelers out of the mix if either the Miami Dolphins, Tennessee Titans or Indianapolis Colts won on Sunday.

Through Saturday night, the only AFC certainties are that the Chiefs and Chargers are in the playoffs.

  • 100%