What the Broncos would need to break their way to make the playoffs

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3) Texans Win The South, Jags and Colts tie at 9-8 to finish

Let's take a look at a not-terribly-crazy scenario: The Texans win out against the Browns, Titans, and Colts. Assuming the Colts can win one game left on their schedule before the Texans, which would be either the Falcons or Raiders, the Texans need to win out to win the South. The Jags head to Tampa this upcoming week as underdogs against the Bucs, then host the Panthers, and close in Tennessee.

As for the Colts, a finish of anything less than 2-1 puts them in serious danger of missing the playoffs. Let's say the Colts drop one of their next two and then lose to Houston in week 18. In this scenario, both the Colts AND Jaguars could miss the playoffs, the Texans win the South, and the Broncos slot in as the sixth seed. How does this scenario work out, you may ask? Well...

DEN: vs NE, vs LAC, @ NE
IND: @ ATL, @ LV, vs HOU
HOU: vs CLE, vs TEN, @ IND
JAX: @ TB, vs CAR, @ TEN

In this wild, but somewhat possible scenario, the Colts struggle to end the year, The Jaguars continue their slide, the Texans reach their full potential, and the Broncos take care of business. This, along with the Bills taking care of business on their end, the Dolphins winning the East, and the Bengals struggling against the Browns and Chiefs, ends with the Texans as the 4, Browns as the 5, Broncos as the 6, and Bills as the 7.


Ultimately, the Broncos should be rooting for chaos from everyone but themselves. The more that goes wrong in the AFC (outside of Denver), the better their chances are. However, a chaotic AFC South and Miami divisional title would put the Broncos in prime position to play in the NFL playoffs should they win out, and break one of the NFL's longest playoff droughts.

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