AFC Playoff Picture: Here is how Broncos could be officially eliminated in Week 17

The Denver Broncos are much closer to be out of the playoffs than in heading into the second-to-last week of the 2023 regular season.

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs (14) only had 3 catches against the Broncos.
Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs (14) only had 3 catches against the Broncos. / Jamie Germano/Rochester Democrat and
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Following a ridiculous loss to the New England Patriots on Christmas Eve, the Denver Broncos probably don't even deserve to be in the playoffs. But mathematically, they are still alive.

As such, there are still some wild scenarios in which they can still qualify for the playoffs. After this week, those will be a bit more clear but we still may need a genie to pop out of a bottle in order for it to happen.

However, here are the scenarios that will eliminate the Broncos this week. All of these scenarios involve the Buffalo Bills, Jacksonville Jaguars, Pittsburgh Steelers, Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts.

Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Chargers
Dec 10, 2023; Inglewood, California, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson (3) runs against the Chargers. / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Loss to Chargers

All of these complicated scenarios will be out the window if the Broncos lose to the Chargers this Sunday. A loss would drop them to 7-9 and they would be playing out the string in the season finale.

The Broncos recently defeated the Chargers 24-7 on the road but the team has moved on from Brandon Staley and they looked much better last week with interim coach Giff Smith in a game they probably should have won against the Bills.

The Broncos have to take care of business in their own back yard before any of these other scenarios can even come into play. But even if they win, they can be eliminated with any of the following...