Finally, we have reached the end.
With nearly every competitor eliminated by the conclusion of Week 16’s games, the playoff picture, largely in flux for weeks, has started to take its final shape.
In the NFC, every participant except the winner of the NFC South has been decided. More amazingly, each of the other five teams who have already clinched a playoff berth have a chance at home field advantage throughout the playoffs.
In the AFC, teams like the Bills and Dolphins officially saw their playoff chances vanish, but a remarkable four teams are battling for one final spot. While all but one technically need help from someone else to get into the postseason, the beauty of the matchups is that the team that needs to lose to allow someone else to get into the postseason — Chargers — will be facing one of the teams vying for the final spot — Chiefs.
With nearly everything else in place, the entire portrait of the 2014 season is receiving its finishing touches. Sitting atop the list are the usual suspects from New England, Seattle, and Green Bay, while the bottom is supported by the Titans, Jets, Buccaneers, and Jaguars, relatively typical to past seasons. There are, of course, the surprises, like that of the Cowboys and Lions in the front, with the Saints and 49ers near the back-end.
Regardless, the order in which these teams finish their season is a function of nothing besides the sixteen weeks of football that has brought them to this point.
One final week will solidify it entirely: