NFL Playoff Picture: How the bracket looks right now – ESPN (blog)

11:47 PM ET

Kevin SeifertNFL Nation

Close national NFL writer NFC North reporter, 2008-2013 Covered Vikings for Minneapolis Star Tribune, 1999-2008

Week 10 won’t bring much clarity to the NFL playoff race. The teams with good records continued winning, for the most part, to keep pace with the other teams with good records.

Let’s take a closer look, with some help from ESPN’s Football Power Index (FPI). What you see below are how the six seeds in each conference would fall if the season ended Sunday night.


The Steelers did just enough against the mostly punchless Indianapolis Colts, putting together a late fourth-quarter drive to complete a comeback victory. They now sit atop the AFC North by three full games, and that Week 15 matchup with the Patriots at Heinz Field is looming larger by the week in terms of final playoff seeding.

A fifth consecutive victory Sunday night suggests the Patriots are doing what they usually do at this time of year: Figure out their issues and correct them. They hold a seeding tiebreaker over the Chiefs at the moment because of one less conference loss. (The Patriots are 4-1 in the AFC, while the Chiefs are 4-2). For the sake of drama, let’s all hope that the Patriots and Steelers keep pace with each other until at least Week 15.

The Chiefs got a chance to regroup during the bye, after losing three of their previous four games, and emerged just a game behind the AFC pace. Even better: Their Week 11 opponent is the New York Giants, perhaps the league’s most hapless team at the moment. (The Chiefs are currently 11.5-point favorites in New York.) They’ll follow that game with matchups against the Bills and at

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