NFL playoff brackets have been updated, and the New York Giants and Detroit Lions have stronger holds on two slots in the NFC. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Minnesota Vikings, and Seattle Seahawks also came up with big wins during Week 11 of the NFL schedule. On the opposite end of those results, the New Orleans Saints, Philadelphia Eagles, and Arizona Cardinals took hits in their efforts to get into the 2017 NFL Playoffs.
Playing against the Chicago Bears, the Giants escaped with a 22-16 victory at home on Sunday (Nov. 20). Giants quarterback Eli Manning threw for 227 yards and two touchdowns, helping lead his team to a 7-3 record on the season. This was the fifth-straight victory for the Giants, giving the team a strong hold on the first Wild Card slot in the NFC.
The New York Giants couldn’t move up in the standings, as the NFC East-leading Dallas Cowboys won again. The Cowboys took care of the Baltimore Ravens, completing a season sweep of the AFC North, and improving the team to 9-1 on the season. The Cowboys currently hold the best record in the entire NFL.
As for how the NFL playoff brackets shape up for the NFC, the Dallas Cowboys and the Seattle Seahawks (7-2-1) hold the first-round byes. The Detroit Lions (6-4) lead the NFC North and the Atlanta Falcons (6-4) lead the NFC South. The Lions and Falcons would then host the two Wild Card games to kick off the postseason. Can the Lions keep winning and prove that they are for real this season?
NFC Playoff Brackets:
First-Round Byes – Dallas Cowboys (1), Seattle Seahawks (2)
Detroit Lions (3) vs. Washington Redskins (6)
Atlanta Falcons (4) vs. New York Giants (5)
In the AFC, the NFL playoff brackets have become quite muddled, with three teams from the AFC West battling for a first-round bye. The New England Patriots won against the San Francisco 49ers in a game that won’t award the team any style points, but it still went in the win column. The Patriots improved to 8-2 on the season (5-0 on the road) to maintain the best record in the conference.
The Oakland Raiders currently have the second first-round bye in the AFC, with a 7-2 record that will be tested against the Houston Texans on Monday night football (Nov. 21). The Texans (6-3) are trying hard to move up the standings and could do just that with a big win on the road. For now, the Texans have a one and a half game lead over the Indianapolis Colts (5-5) for first place in the AFC South.
The NFL playoff brackets still have the Baltimore Ravens as the No. 4 seed in the AFC, even though the Pittsburgh Pirates have now tied them for first place in the AFC North. The Ravens own the tie-breaker, so they remain in a playoff slot for the time being. It also raises the stakes for when the Ravens and Steelers face off again later this season.
The two Wild Card teams in the AFC are currently the Kansas City Chiefs (7-3) and Denver Broncos (7-3). The teams hold an even stronger position in the overall standings, even though the Miami Dolphins won an important game against the Los Angeles Rams. Now the Dolphins are at 6-4, putting the team just ahead of the Steelers (5-5) and Colts (5-5) for seventh place in the AFC.
As for the NFL playoff brackets in the AFC, the New England Patriots and Oakland Raiders get to enjoy the first-round byes (if the playoffs were to begin today). The Patriots and Raiders would then host divisional playoff games against the teams winning in the Wild Card round.
AFC Playoff Brackets:
First-Round Byes: New England Patriots (1), Oakland Raiders (2)
Houston Texans (3) vs. Denver Broncos (6)
Baltimore Ravens (4) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (5)
[Featured Image by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images]