The Tennessee Titans dominated the Jacksonville Jaguars on Thursday night to keep their playoff hopes alive, but the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs can actually clinch playoff spots this weekend.
When the Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots met earlier this season as the powerhouses in the AFC, the Pats barely scraped by 43-40, surviving a furious second-half flurry of offense from MVP candidate Patrick Mahomes.
This week, the two AFC teams with the best records could clinch a playoff spot.
New England must battle the rival Miami Dolphins in a matchup that they are expected to win, while the Chiefs have a tougher game against the Baltimore Ravens. Should both emerge victorious, Kansas City will clinch a playoff berth while the Patriots will notch another AFC East title into their belts.
Thanks to Tennessee’s win over Jacksonville, the Chiefs and Patriots are the only teams that can qualify for a playoff spot in the AFC this week.
Both the Chiefs and Patriots are favored to lock up playoff positions. They would join the Los Angeles Rams, who became the first team to clinch a postseason berth with their 30-16 victory over the Detroit Lions. Los Angeles can tie up a first-round bye in the postseason by beating the Chicago Bears on Sunday Night Football.
In the NFC, the New Orleans Saints are the only team that can grab another spot. New Orleans can clinch the NFC South with a win on the road over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, or a loss by the Carolina Panthers against the Cleveland Browns. The Saints can also clinch a playoff berth with losses from the Minnesota Vikings, Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins.