The NFL playoff picture entering Week 12 of the 2017 season looks nothing like what was expected given preseason projections. Few predicted the Eagles at this point would be virtual locks for the postseason, while NFC East defending-champion Cowboys would be holding on for dear playoff life.
The AFC has not been more predictable. Behind the Patriots and Steelers, who still sit atop the standings as expected, the Jaguars have the best chance to make the playoffs out of the conference.
Yes, the NFL playoff picture looks great for some teams and bleak for others with six weeks left to play, but keep in mind the possibility of late-season runs similar to those we have seen in recent years. In 2012, the Redskins and rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III were 3-6 entering Week 11, when they began a seven-game winning streak and won their division. Just last season, the Packers were 4-6 entering Week 12. As quarterback Aaron Rodgers forecasted after Green Bay’s Week 11 loss to Washington, the Packers “ran the table” with six straight wins and stole the NFC North title from the Lions.
As for this season, here are the chances each contending team has to make the playoffs after the 2017 season, according to the NFL.
Philadelphia Eagles (9-1): 99.9 percent
New England Patriots (8-2): 99.8 percent
Pittsburgh Steelers (8-2): 99.7 percent
New Orleans Saints (8-2): 97.5 percent
Minnesota Vikings (8-2): 97.5 percent
Jacksonville Jaguars (7-3): 96.6 percent
Kansas City Chiefs (6-4): 89.8 percent
Carolina Panthers (7-3): 76.1 percent
Los Angeles Rams (7-3): 75.6 percent
Tennessee Titans (6-4): 64.8 percent
Seattle Seahawks (6-4): 58.7 percent
Detroit Lions (6-4): 51.2 percent
Los Angeles Chargers (4-6): 47.3 percent
Baltimore Ravens (5-5): 46.9 percent
Atlanta Falcons (6-4): 39.9 percent
Buffalo Bills (5-5): 22.1 percent
Houston Texans (4-6): 14.3 percent
Dallas Cowboys (5-5): 11.3 percent
Green Bay Packers (5-5): 10.2 percent
Denver Broncos (3-7): 8.7 percent
Of note: The 4-6 Raiders were not included in the NFL’s video. Per Vegas Insider, Oakland’s odds to win the Super Bowl are 66/1, better than those of Houston, Buffalo and Denver in the AFC.