Picture of the Colts playoffs: How Indianapolis can secure an AFC place with a wild card in week 18

Under coach Frank Reich, Colts is trying to get to the playoffs for the third time in four seasons. Indianapolis is close to getting another place with a wild card in the AFC, but that didn’t happen in week 18.

At 9-7, the Colts are currently number 6, 10-5 Patriots and 9-7 Chargers. Here’s what they need to do to at least stay there and play in Super Bowl 56:

WEEK 18 TIPS: Against proliferation Straight up

Picture of the NFL playoffs: the Colts’ chances of the playoffs

Colts can get to the playoffs in one of three ways, with the first being the most favorable.

1. Colts wins in week 18

The Colts are on their way against the Jaguars (2-14). There are more than two touchdown favorites in the game. The Colts stayed home at week 10 when they defeated the Jaguars at 11:17 p.m. However, the Jaguars lost in New England 50:10. This loss in Indianapolis started a series of eight losses. The Colts wouldn’t have to worry about anything else unless there was a lot of upset.

2. The Chargers lose in week 18 while the Steelers draw the Ravens

If the Jaguars end the season in a big shock, like beating Bills at home in Week 9, the Colts won’t like their chances of losing. Then they would need the Raiders, with whom they lost at home in week 17, to win again over the Chargers on Sunday night.

That’s only one half of the formula, the more reasonable part for Indianapolis. The second is a highly unlikely event, with Pittsburgh winning its second draw of the season at Baltimore.

3. The Chargers lose in Week 18, while the Ravens and Dolphins win

Let’s say the Colts lose and the Raiders win. This scenario is much more likely than the required Steelers-Ravens draw. The Colts, with a loss of 9-8, should hope the Ravens win as home favorites vs. Steelers and Dolphins win as home loser vs. Patriots.

The Colts would be able to advance to the playoffs at 10-7 and with some help could move ahead of the AFC East, Bills or Patriots if they beat both teams.

At 9: 8, the Colts would make the playoffs in four games with the Ravens, Chargers and Dolphins. They would win a tiebreak conference record over all three teams because none of those teams can achieve the 7 AFC wins that Indianapolis already has.

Although there is a back-up plan in the game, the Colts do not want to leave their playoff chances to other teams.

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