With 14 teams still in contention for a berth in Super Bowl XIX, here is the playoff picture with two weeks, minus two games, of the season left. NFC East
Washington, New York, Dallas and St. Louis are in contention.
Dallas or Washington, which play today, can take the division title on overall record if either wins its last two games and New York loses once. Washington will host St. Louis Dec. 16 and Dallas will close at Miami Dec. 17.
Dallas can win the title if it defeats Washington and loses to Miami, if Washington beats St. Louis and New York loses its last two.
New York is assured the division title by winning its last two -- today in St. Louis and hosting New Orleans Dec. 15 -- based on its overall record (11-5), division record (6-2) or sweep of Dallas. New York also can take the title if it defeats St. Louis and loses to New Orleans, if Dallas beats Washington and loses to Miami. This would be true even if Washington defeats St. Louis, because of New York's superior record among the three teams: Giants 3-1 vs. Cowboys 1-3 and Redskins 2-2.
Because of its 8-4 conference record, Dallas can clinch at least a wild card berth with a defeat of Washington coupled with a St. Louis loss to New York. Washington and St. Louis can ensure at least wild card berths by winning their last two games. New York can clinch at least a wild card berth by beating St. Louis, if the Los Angeles Rams lose today to Houston. NFC Central
Chicago has clinched the division; the other teams have been eliminated from playoff contention. NFC West
San Francisco has won the division title. The 49ers will be host to one NFC divisional playoff game (Dec. 29 or 30) and, if they win it, the NFC championship game Jan. 6.
Los Angeles can clinch a wild card spot by winning its last two, today versus Houston and in San Francisco Dec. 14, based on overall record. AFC East
Miami has clinched the title and will be host to one AFC divisional playoff (Dec. 29 or 30).
New England can get a wild card berth by winning its last two (today in Philadelphia and hosting Indianapolis Dec. 16), if the Los Angeles Raiders lose Monday in Detroit and to visiting Pittsburgh Dec. 16. The Patriots and Raiders then would finish 10-6, but the Patriots would have a better conference record, 9-3 to 8-4. AFC Central
Pittsburgh can win the division title with one victory in its last two games, today against Cleveland and in Los Angeles, if Cincinnati loses either in New Orleans today or to Buffalo Dec. 16.
If Pittsburgh loses once and Cincinnati wins twice, both teams would finish 8-8 and the Bengals would win the title because of a better division record, 5-1 to either 2-4 or 3-3. In a 7-9 tie, the Bengals also would get the title because of a better division record. AFC West
The title will be decided when Seattle plays host to Denver Dec. 15 unless Seattle beats Kansas City today and Denver loses to San Diego. That would make the Seahawks no worse than 13-3 and the Broncos no better than 12-4.
If Seattle is 13-2 and Denver 12-3 going into the final game and Seattle wins, it would take the division title. If Denver wins to create a 13-3 tie, the Broncos would get the title by virtue of a better conference record, 10-2 to 9-3, since the teams would have split head-to-head meetings and would have the same division records, 6-2. -- Source: the NFL