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AFC Tiebreakers entering Week 17

The following charts seek to answer the following question: If these two (or more) teams finish with the same record, who wins the tiebreaker?

Notes and assumptions:

  1. No possibility of future tie games.
  2. Tiebreaker winners are as they would be if the teams were tied at the end of the season, NOT as if the season ended right now.
  3. Tiebreakers that don’t affect playoff berths or seeding are ignored.  (Example: If HOU and IND both finish 4-12, IND finishes in front of HOU in the AFC South.)
  4. Division ties are broken first.
  5. If three or more teams are tied, apply that tiebreaker, not the two-team tiebreaker.
  6. Strength of victory is the combined winning percentage (essentially, the number of wins) of the teams a team has beaten. It has nothing to do with point totals.
  7. The #6 seed will have at least an 8-8 record.  Any 8-8 tie for the #6 seed must include all three of BUF, TEN, and LAC.
  8. Clinched division and first round bye: NE, PIT.
  9. Clinched division and #3 seed: JAX.
  10. Clinched division and #4 seed: KC.
  11. Eliminated: NYJ, CIN, CLE, IND, HOU, DEN, MIA, OAK.
  12. Eliminated from division: BUF, BAL, TEN, LAC.
  13. The complete tiebreaker rules are here.

AFC East

NE clinched division and first-round bye.  NYJ and MIA eliminated from playoffs.

AFC North

PIT clinched division and first-round bye.  CLE and CIN eliminated from playoffs.

AFC South

JAX clinched division and #3 seed.  IND and HOU eliminated from playoffs.

AFC West

KC clinched division and #4 seed.  DEN and OAK eliminated from playoffs.

If these teams tie at with these things happening tie goes to based on
KC-LAC 9-7 KC head-to-head

Conference tiebreakers

2-team ties

If these teams tie at tie goes to based on
NE-PIT NE head-to-head
BUF-BAL 9-7 BUF strength-of-victory
BUF-TEN 9-7 TEN conference record
BUF-LAC 9-7 LAC head-to-head
BAL-TEN 9-7 TEN head-to-head
BAL-LAC 9-7 BAL conference record
TEN-LAC 9-7 TEN conference record
JAX-KC 10-6 JAX conference record

3-team

If these teams tie at tie goes to based on
BUF-BAL-TEN 9-7 TEN conference record
BUF-BAL-LAC 9-7 BUF
  1. LAC eliminated on conference record
  2. strength-of-victory
BAL-TEN-LAC TEN conference record

4-team

If these teams tie at tie goes to based on
BUF-BAL-TEN-LAC 9-7 TEN conference record

 

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