In Week 17, Fans Can Secure a Playoff Spot for the Bills by Rooting for These Teams

The Buffalo Bills will be counting on the same dominant Baltimore Ravens team that convincingly defeated the San Francisco 49ers 33-19 on Monday night to show up for their crucial match against the Miami Dolphins. This highly anticipated game is set to be the highlight of Week 17 in the NFL.

Lamar Jackson and the Ravens dominated the 49ers on their home turf, exposing the team’s struggles during their recent six-game losing streak. The 49ers, once considered a strong contender for the Super Bowl, were no match for Jackson and his formidable Ravens.

Now, it is the Ravens who appear to be the frontrunners for the Super Bowl victory, boasting the best record in the league at 12-3. They have an opportunity to solidify their position as they face the Dolphins, aiming to secure the No. 1 seed in the AFC bracket. Currently, the Ravens have been listed as an early three-point favorite for the upcoming game.

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How the Buffalo Bills look in the AFC playoff picture

If the Bills win against New England on Sunday and Miami loses, the AFC East title will be determined in the Week 18 game at Hard Rock Stadium in South Florida.


In addition to witnessing a fourth consecutive Buffalo victory in their regular-season home finale at Highmark Stadium, the next priority for Bills fans is to hope for a Dolphins loss in Baltimore. This is crucial because without it, the Bills will be unable to secure the division title, resulting in no home playoff games for them.

What teams should Bills fans root for in Week 17: Scenario 1

To start off, the Bills need to prioritize securing a wild-card playoff spot. The simplest way to achieve this is by defeating the Patriots. Additionally, they will need at least two out of three of the Steelers, Bengals, and Jaguars to suffer losses.

Sunday, Steelers at Seahawks, 4:25 p.m.

Last week, Pittsburgh came through for the Bills with a massive victory over the Bengals. This outcome was crucial for Buffalo since it pushed Cincinnati, a team that holds a head-to-head tiebreaker against them, one game behind in the conference standings. Now, both the Bengals and the Bills are sitting at 8-7, tied with the Steelers, Colts, and Texans.

The Bills find themselves in a role reversal now, as they need the Steelers to suffer a loss. This outcome is entirely plausible given that the Steelers are slated to face off against the Seahawks (8-7), who are fighting tooth and nail to secure a playoff spot in the NFC. The Seahawks’ impressive comeback victory against the Titans propelled them into the seventh seed, but they are only one game ahead of the Vikings, Falcons, Packers, and Saints. Consequently, they are motivated to maintain their winning streak and secure their playoff berth.

Lumen Field has always posed a formidable challenge for opposing teams, and this season is no exception. The Seahawks have maintained a strong home record of 5-2, with one loss against the 49ers. They have secured impressive victories at home against the Browns and Eagles. Go Seahawks!

Sunday: Bengals at Chiefs, 4:25 p.m.

The Bills received a fortunate break with the Chiefs’ loss to the Raiders on Monday. This loss benefits the Bills as the Chiefs have yet to secure the AFC West title. Therefore, it is crucial for the Bills to defeat Cincinnati in order to solidify their chances of clinching the division.

Despite their recent struggles, with three losses in their last four games, it is expected that Andy Reid, Patrick Mahomes, and Taylor Swift’s boyfriend will find a way to solve their issues and outscore Jake Browning and the Bengals. One would think so, at least.

If you’re convinced that the Bills will emerge as the champions of the AFC East, then you’ll find yourself in the peculiar position of rooting for the Bengals. Surprising as it may seem, a Bengals victory would push the Chiefs down the conference seeding, potentially altering the outcome of the playoffs. This could mean the distinction between facing a division round game in either Buffalo or Kansas City.

The top priority at the moment is to secure a postseason spot by defeating the Bengals. Despite it being somewhat sacrilegious, supporting the Chiefs is necessary as it is part of the equation to clinch the playoff berth.

Sunday: Panthers at Jaguars, 1 p.m.

In this clinching scenario, if either of the two games doesn’t go in Buffalo’s favor, then the third game comes into play where Jacksonville would need to lose to the 2-13 Panthers. At first glance, this might seem highly improbable, but considering the Jaguars’ recent poor performance during their four-game losing streak, anything is possible.

The Tennessee Titans appeared to be on track to secure the AFC South title, but now find themselves in a tight race with the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans, all tied at 8-7. However, the Titans still have control over their fate. If they can defeat the struggling Carolina Panthers and emerge victorious against the Titans in Week 18, they will secure the division championship.

This is where things get intriguing. Jacksonville has an edge in the head-to-head tiebreaker due to their win over Buffalo in London. As a result, if the Jaguars were to win the AFC South, they would not be in the wild-card competition. This is advantageous because there is no certainty that the Bills will win their remaining two games and claim the AFC East. There is a fair chance that they might not emerge victorious in Miami, placing them in the wild-card hunt.

If the Steelers and Bengals both lose to secure the Bills’ spot in the playoffs, I would recommend rooting for the Jaguars. However, if the Steelers or Bengals win, then the choice regarding this Jaguars game becomes clear. Let’s support the Panthers.

What teams should Bills fans root for in Week 17: Scenario 2

To secure a playoff spot, Buffalo has a slightly more challenging scenario where three teams would need to lose instead of just two. For this to happen, the Texans, Colts, and either the Bengals or Steelers must all suffer defeats in Week 17. Let’s take a closer look at these crucial games.

Sunday, Titans at Texans, 1 p.m.

In the AFC South, Houston finds itself in a tie for first place. However, due to its 2-2 division record, the team currently holds the third position. Meanwhile, the Jaguars boast a strong 4-1 record, with the Colts close behind at 3-2.

If the Texans lose to the Titans at home this week and other scenarios play out, the Bills will have one less team to contend with as Houston’s chances of making the playoffs will essentially be eliminated. However, the Texans are expected to have quarterback C.J. Stroud back in action, which could potentially impact the outcome of the game. Additionally, the Jaguars beating the Panthers and the Colts defeating the Raiders would further solidify the Bills’ playoff position.

Even if the Texans manage to defeat Tennessee in their home game and both the Jaguars and Colts suffer losses, Houston’s chances of making it to the playoffs are only at 52%. It’s a straightforward situation where the Texans pose a potential threat to the Bills, but the Titans do not. Go Titans!

Sunday, Raiders at Colts, 1 p.m.

The Colts experienced a devastating defeat in Atlanta last week, which would have placed them in first position in the AFC South had they emerged victorious. Unfortunately, they now face the formidable Raiders, who recently demolished the Chargers with a resounding 63-21 victory and pulled off a remarkable 20-14 upset in Kansas City, postponing the Chiefs’ clinching of the AFC West.

The Colts are entering Sunday’s game with a strong 55% chance of making it to the playoffs, while the Raiders have a much lower 14% chance. If the Raiders end up losing, their chances of making it to the playoffs will be completely eliminated. Even if they manage to secure a win, their fate will still depend on the outcome of the game between Buffalo and New England. The Raiders will not be able to surpass the Bills in the standings unless Buffalo is defeated.

If the Indianapolis Colts manage to defeat the Las Vegas Raiders and then secure a victory against the Houston Texans in Week 18, both games being played at home, their likelihood of making it to the playoffs increases significantly to 97%. In this scenario, there is even a possibility for the Colts to surpass the Buffalo Bills in terms of wild-card seeding. Let’s root for the Raiders to help the Colts achieve their playoff aspirations!

Sunday, Chargers at Broncos, 4:25 pm.

Denver’s hopes of making it to the playoffs were dashed after their loss to the Patriots. As a result, this game holds little significance for them. However, in the unlikely scenario that Denver manages to win on the road against Los Angeles and Las Vegas, and receives ample support from other teams, the clear choice in this situation is to root for the Chargers.

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