By Dayna O’Gorman // @DaynaOG
The 2020 NFL season is winding down and every game is starting to have a massive impact on the playoffs. Teams are locking in their seeding, while others are fighting just to get in. For the AFC West, it is all wrapped up. The Kansas City Chiefs have the top seed, while the other teams are all out. But in the NFC West, there is still some wiggle room surrounding the playoffs.
The Chiefs, once again, dominated their division. While their only loss so far this year was in division, to the Las Vegas Raiders, they were never really in danger of not winning the division. Kansas City wrapped up the AFC West title last week, and this week did the same for the number 1 seed in the entire AFC. They will have a bye week to start the playoffs, and home-field advantage throughout.
The Chiefs are going to be dominant in this league for years.
The other 3 teams in the division, the Raiders, the Denver Broncos, and the Los Angeles Chargers, have all been eliminated from the playoffs. Each team had their struggles throughout the season, but looking forward it would seem that all three have things to be excited about.
Denver was destroyed with injuries and we never truly saw what that team was, so next year will be a better evaluation season. The Chargers have a hot, young quarterback in Justin Herbert and can build for the future around him.
The Raiders are a harder sell. We thought this year would be a big one for the team in Vegas, but it just didn’t turn out that way. With the QB questions seemingly settled, they struggled in so many other areas. Is Jon Gruden the head coach they need? Can GM Mike Mayock have another good draft? So many questions.
WON THE NFC WEST!!!!! pic.twitter.com/IyL1i1ypNn
— Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) December 28, 2020
Over in the NFC West, the Seattle Seahawks beat the Los Angeles Rams last night, winning the division. The division has had a different team sitting in the top position every year for the last 3 years, proving that the NFC West is one of the most competitive in the league. The Seahawks, however, have not locked in their seeding position yet. They have the opportunity to land anywhere from the first seed to the fifth, depending on other games in week 17.
The NFC West has the chance to send 3 teams to the playoffs, with only the San Francisco 49ers having been eliminated. While it is most likely the Rams will play in the postseason, the Arizona Cardinals also have a chance to make it in. It will come down to their game next week against the Rams…which will decide the fate of both teams.
Ok so looking at the playoff scenarios for the NFC West, Seattle can get the first seed IF they beat San Francisco in week 17, and both the New Orleans Saints and the Green Bay Packers lose. This is an unlikely scenario, but definitely possible.
The Rams and Cardinals play each other in week 17. If the Rams can’t beat the Cardinals, they will need help from the Packers (beating the Chicago Bears). With QB Jared Goff most likely out due to a broken thumb, Rams fans will be big Green Bay fans next week. The Cardinals win and they’re in. That simple.
The West in both the AFC and NFC has been fun to watch this year, and that looks to continue into the playoffs.
Follow Dayna on Twitter // @DaynaOG