CINCINNATI — We’re going to see some action in the AFC wild-cards.
We’re also going to have to wait to see if this is the beginning of a playoff race.
Here are some things to watch in the first round: 1.
AFC wild card: No. 1 seed Denver, No. 2 seed Buffalo and No. 3 seed Indianapolis all have a chance to win their division.
If all three of those teams lose, there will be a wild-ride that could see the AFC West as the wild-fire zone.
If the Broncos, Bills and Colts can keep the AFC title race close, the AFC South and AFC North could also be in play.
AFC West: The division between the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders is so wide open that the AFC has no clear favorite.
And it’s no surprise that the division between Kansas City and Oakland has been a mess of mediocrity for most of the season.
The Raiders have been a disaster, and the Chargers have been the only team that can compete for a wild card spot.
The Chargers’ offense has been in a funk and the offense has struggled in the second half of the year.
The Chiefs’ defense has been one of the best in football and the team should be good enough to win it all.
NFC West: With three playoff spots and the NFC West leading the league in points per game (24.3), the NFC is in great shape.
The NFC has three wild-Card spots and six division games on the docket.
The Bears and Rams both have strong defensive teams.
And the NFC’s two best offensive teams, the Green Bay Packers and Washington Redskins, both have at least one playoff spot locked up. 4.
NFC North: The Packers and Cowboys are the only two teams in the NFC that are playoff contenders.
The Cowboys have the best offense in the league and the Packers have the No. 5 defense in football.
But the Cowboys have a bad quarterback and the Giants’ offense hasn’t been the same since Eli Manning returned to the lineup.
And that’s not even mentioning the NFC South.
AFC East: New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has been so bad the Patriots lost to the Colts on Monday night.
The Colts were on top, but Brady’s poor play has been an issue for them as well.
And in the division, the New York Jets have a good team in the middle but they’re not in the mix for the wild card.
If New England can keep Tom Brady out of trouble, it’s going to be hard for the AFC to get a playoff berth.
NFC South: The Saints and Buccaneers have had so much success with a strong defense that it’s not hard to see the division going to Atlanta and the Carolina Panthers.
The Saints are coming off a win against the New Orleans Saints in Week 14 and they’ll be back in the thick of things on Sunday.
The Buccaneers have the second-best offense in football but they’ve been outscored by the Panthers by more than 3,000 yards.
But their defense has made them a threat and the Panthers will be hard to beat.
AFC North: After the Steelers, the Colts and Cowboys both are in great positions to win a wild game.
The Steelers have the NFC East title and have the AFC North title in the balance, while the Cowboys are in a tie for the NFC North title.
The Falcons have been one play away from getting their first division title since 1985.
And if the Falcons can win their first wild-carrier game, they can clinch the NFC wild card without ever having to play the Titans.
AFC South: Jacksonville is going to go up against the Dolphins in Week 15.
The Dolphins have a solid defense, but they haven’t played well enough to get into the playoffs.
And with three playoff slots and the AFC Southeast tied for second in points scored, the Dolphins have some competition.
The Jaguars are a solid team, but the Colts have been an utter mess of a team this season.
And they’ll need to keep things rolling if they’re going into the wild game against the Broncos in Week 16.
NFC East: The New York Giants have been in great form, but New Orleans has been out of playoff contention the last two years.
The Giants are coming up on the bye and the Saints have a lot of talent on their roster, but that doesn’t necessarily make them a playoff team.
And even if the Saints can win out and stay in the playoff hunt, it will be tough to get to the Super Bowl.
AFC Central: This is going at least as far as the division-rival Broncos.
The Denver Broncos have had the best offensive and defensive records in football this season and have a playoff shot.
The Broncos also have the easiest schedule in the conference and have three playoff games.
But if the Broncos can keep Peyton Manning from getting injured and the defense stays healthy, the Broncos should be