NFL Playoff Scenarios: Patriots, Jets, Steelers And Falcons Can Clinch In Week 14

The NFL playoff picture is coming into focus as we enter Week 14 of the 2010 season. There are four teams that can clinch playoff spots this weekend: New England Patriots (10-2), New York Jets (9-3), Pittsburgh Steelers (9-3) and Atlanta Falcons (10-2).

Nearly every scenario requires the teams to win (or tie) this weekend. The Patriots visit the Chicago Bears, Jets host the Dolphins, Steelers host the Cincinnati Bengals and Atlanta goes on the road to the Carolina Panthers.

Here are the various scenarios in which each of these teams can clinch the playoffs in Week 14:

New England Patriots: They can clinch with a win or a tie. It's simple as that. But regardless of what happens in their game they can also clinch with a Miami Dolphins loss or tie plus a Jacksonville Jaguars loss or tie, or a Dolphins loss or tie plus an Indianapolis Colts loss or tie. New England could potentially clinch in other ways involving strength of schedule tiebreakers.

New York Jets: They can clinch a playoff spot in three scenarios. First: Jets win plus San Diego Chargers loss or tie plus Jaguars loss or tie. Second: Jets win plus Chargers loss or tie plus Colts loss or tie. Third: Jets tie plus Oakland Raiders loss or tie plus Chargers loss plus Colts loss.

Pittsburgh Steelers: They can clinch a playoff spot in a number of ways. First: Steelers win plus Jaguars loss or tie plus Patriots win or tie plus Dolphins loss or tie. Second: Steelers win plus Colts loss or tie plus Patriots win or tie plus Dolphins loss or tie. Third: Steelers win plus Colts loss or tie plus Patriots win or tie plus Raiders loss or tie plus Chargers loss or tie. Fourth: Steelers win plus Colts loss or tie plus Dolphins loss or tie plus Raiders loss or tie. Fifth: Steelers tie plus Dolphins loss or tie plus Raiders loss or tie plus Chargers loss or tie plus Colts loss. The Steelers can clinch in other ways coming down to strength of victory tiebreaker over certain teams.

Atlanta Falcons: They can clinch a playoff spot in four ways. First: Falcons win plus New York Giants loss plus Philadelphia Eagles loss. Second: Falcons win plus Giants loss plus Green Bay Packers loss. Third: Falcons win plus Eagles loss plus Packers loss. Fourth: Falcons tie plus Giants loss plus Eagles loss plus Packers loss plus Tampa Bay Buccaneers loss or tie. The Falcons can clinch if any of the games involving the Giants Eagles or Packers end in a tie.

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