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Can the Commanders still make the playoffs after losing to Browns in Week 17

The Commanders hold the final wild card berth in the NFC, but things could still go haywire. We break down what they need to do and where they can land in the 2023 NFL Playoffs.

Terry McLaurin #17 of the Washington Commanders celebrates after a touchdown during the third quarter in the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium on December 24, 2022 in Santa Clara, California. Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Results update: The Commanders went back to Carson Wentz for this important matchup and it backfired. Wentz was awful and the Browns easily beat the Commanders 24-10. They haven’t been eliminated yet, but things aren’t going their way so far, as the Lions beat the Bears and if the Packers can beat the Vikings, they will be eliminated from playoff contention.


The Washington Commanders host the Cleveland Browns in Week 17, and things could finish really well or really poorly for the Commanders by the close of the weekend. The game kicks off at 1 p.m. ET and the Commanders are a 2.5-point favorite at DraftKings Sportsbook.

How Commanders can clinch a playoff berth

Washington needs quite a few things to break right if they’re going to clinch a wild card berth in Week 17. They need to beat the Browns before anything else matters. Then, they need the Lions to lose to the Bears, the Seahawks to lose to the Jets, and the Packers to lose or tie the Vikings.

The Lions are 5.5-point home favorites against the Bears. The Seahawks are 2.5-point home underdogs to the Jets. The Packers are a field goal home favorite against the Vikings.

How Commanders can be eliminated from playoff contention

It is a wild week for Washington as they also could find themselves eliminated from playoff contention. The last time a team had both clinching and elimination scenarios in the same week before the final week of the regular season was the 2016 Bucs.

The Commanders would be eliminated from playoff contention with a loss and then wins by the Lions and Packers. It’s a little easier to be eliminated if they lose than it is to clinch the playoff berth this week with a win.