What the AFC Teams Are Playing For in Week 16
As we move into Week 16 and 17, it’s going to be very important for bettors to pay attention to what’s on the line for each team. Some teams will have sealed their fate and won’t have much to play for while others will be in situations where they can improve their standing with a win. That being the case, we’ve laid out all of the scenarios for you in the AFC. Check back with us tomorrow to find out what’s at stake for the NFC teams:
Playing For: To Protect No. 1 Seed
The Broncos are playing to protect the No. 1 seed when they visit Houston on Sunday. Essentially, both the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs are both a game back. The Patriots actually own the tiebreaker whereas the Chiefs have the same record at 11-3 but don’t hold the tiebreaker. A Denver loss combined with a win by either of those teams means the Broncos will move down a peg. The Broncos are 10.5-point NFL online betting road favorites versus the Texans.
New England Patriots
Playing For: To Protect No. 2 Seed/Move Up to No. 1 Seed
As mentioned, the Patriots move up with a win combined with a Broncos loss but those who bet on the NFL should note that the Pats can also move down if they lose. They are currently 10-4 and are a 2.5-point NFL football betting road underdog in Baltimore. If they lose, both the 9-5 Cincinnati Bengals or 9-5 Indianapolis Colts could move up.
Playing For: No. 2, No. 3, No. 4 Seed or Miss the Playoffs
The Bengals are a 7.5-point home favorite on the NFL betting odds over the Minnesota Vikings this Sunday. They can move as high as No. 2 with a win and a Patriots loss or they could find themselves on the outside of the playoffs looking in. Baltimore is 8-6 and just one game back of the Bengals and while they don’t have the tiebreaker, they visit the Bengals in Week 17. The Bengals need to take care of business both this week and next or their promising season could go down the tubes.
Playing For: No. 2, No. 3 or No. 4 Seed
Those betting on the NFL will find the Colts as a touchdown underdog in Kansas City this week. The Colts can move as high as second in the AFC with a win and a Patriots and Bengals loss. They can move up to third if they win and the Patriots win, but the Bengals lose. They can’t fall further than fourth.
Playing For: No. 6 Seed, AFC North Title or Miss the Playoffs
The Ravens stunner on Monday Night Football means that they have plenty to play for in the next two weeks. They can either make the playoffs via the No. 6 seed in the AFC or possibly even win their division.
They play the Bengals in Week 17, so if they beat New England this week, they’ll play for the division in Cincinnati next. As for the No. 6 seed, they hold the tiebreaker with Miami so if they can’t win their final two games, they still have a shot at the No. 6 spot. If they lose, though, and Miami wins, they’ll be on the outside looking in.
Playing For: No. 6 Seed
The Dolphins will be a popular choice for NFL betting picks this week as they need a win and are playing in Buffalo. They need to gain a game on the Ravens because they don’t hold the tiebreaker.
San Diego Chargers
Playing For: No. 6 Seed
The Chargers have the longest way to go but if you like shrewd NFL betting tips, look at their schedule: they host Oakland this week and Kansas City next week, who might not have anything to play for. There’s a good chance Kansas City goes 2-0. They’ll also need Baltimore and Miami to go 0-2 in that span. Miami is always a coin flip, but they play Buffalo and then host the New York Jets. The Ravens could conceivably go 0-2 as they host the Patriots and then visit the Bengals, who have yet to lose at home this season. They are still in it.