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How the NFL playoff picture looks coming out of Week 16

The NFL is wrapping up Week 16, and a few teams are standing out in the playoff picture heading into Week 17.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers reacts after a touchdown during the third quarter in the game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on December 26, 2021 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

The NFL has wrapped up the morning slate of games and the playoff picture is starting to clear up toward the top. There remains plenty of chaos in the wild card race, but we’re starting to see teams secure their division championships.

The Packers clinched the NFC North in Week 15, and they have now been joined by the Buccaneers. The Bucs secured the NFC South with an easy win over the Panthers at 1 p.m. Tampa Bay is in third place for the time being following the Rams win, but both teams would drop behind Dallas if the Cowboys win tonight.

Related to that, the Rams beat the Vikings to clinch a playoff berth. They are now a full game up on the Cardinals and can clinch the division next week with a win and a Cardinals loss.

The biggest shocker of the morning saw the Texans beat the Chargers 41-29. That sets up the Chiefs with a chance to clinch the AFC West with a win over the Steelers in the afternoon slate. Meanwhile, the Bengals beat the Ravens 41-21 and now hold a commanding lead on the Ravens. Cincinnati swept the season series so their one-game lead is effectively a two-game lead.

4:05/4:25 p.m. results: The Chiefs thumped the Steelers and in doing so clinched the AFC West title. The Raiders beat the Broncos 17-13 and now sit in ninth place, tied with the Ravens and Chargers at 8-7.

SNF result: Dallas is crushing Washington 42-7 midway through the third quarter. We’re going to call it.

MNF result: The Dolphins beat the Saints 20-3. Miami improved to 8-7 while New Orleans dropped to 7-8.

Here’s a look at what the playoff picture looks like Sunday afternoon heading into the rest of Sunday and Monday Night Football to close out Week 16. *=clinched playoff berth, **=clinched division

AFC playoff picture

1. Kansas City Chiefs, 11-4**
2. Tennessee Titans, 10-5
3. Cincinnati Bengals, 9-6
4. Buffalo Bills, 9-6

5. Indianapolis Colts, 9-6
6. New England Patriots, 9-6
7. Miami Dolphins, 8-7

Outside looking in: Baltimore Ravens (8-7), Los Angeles Chargers (8-7), Las Vegas Raiders (8-7), Pittsburgh Steelers, 7-7-1, Denver Broncos (7-8), Cleveland Browns (7-8)

NFC playoff picture

1. Green Bay Packers, 12-3**
2. Dallas Cowboys, 11-4**
3. Los Angeles Rams, 11-4*
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 11-4**

5. Arizona Cardinals, 10-5*
6. San Francisco 49ers, 8-7
7. Philadelphia Eagles, 8-7

Outside looking in: Minnesota Vikings (7-8), Atlanta Falcons (7-8), New Orleans Saints (7-8)