Updated AFC West Rankings And Raiders’ Playoff Scenarios

As we head into the final week of the NFL season, we’ll get just one final look at each of these teams. The division has done an impressive job of remaining competitive throughout the year, with all teams remaining in the playoff race up until Week 18. As we enter this final week, one of these teams has already clinched a playoff berth, and two more (one of them being the Las Vegas Raiders) will be playing Sunday night for a playoff birth of their own.

No. 1 Kansas City Chiefs

Throughout the final two months of the season the Chiefs have remained the top of this list. Remember that time everybody thought the Chiefs were “figured out”?

Well, so much for that. Things seem back to normal in the Midwest, and the Chiefs look like Super Bowl contenders again. Patrick Mahomes and company will get one more tune-up game before the playoffs. The only thing this team needs to worry about in this final week is a fight for the first overall seed. The Chiefs will once again finish atop the AFC West, and it doesn’t look like the reign will end anytime soon.

Playoff Scenario: Clinched

No. 2 Las Vegas Raiders

The Raiders’ season has been something out of a movie, but with a win this coming Sunday, the Raiders can make sure that movie ends with a happy ending.

If you had told any Raiders’ fan three weeks ago that the team would be able to control their own destiny entering Week 18, they would’ve been ecstatic.

Winning is something that has proved difficult for the Raiders in recent years, but after a nightmare of a season, the Raiders enter the final week with an opportunity to punch their second playoff ticket since 2002. We’ll soon know for sure what this team is made of.

Playoff scenario: Clinch with Win vs. LAC OR IND loss vs. JAX AND PIT loss vs. BAL

No. 3 Los Angeles Chargers

Like the Raiders, the Chargers have seen their fair share of ups and downs this season. As predicted, the team is much better this season. They’ve managed to compile a 9-7 record, but find themselves needing one more win to make the playoffs.

This team is full of talent on both sides of the ball, and many would consider this season a disappointment if they missed the playoffs. Luckily for them, they have the ability to control their own destiny heading into the final week of the year.

Playoff Scenario: Clinch with win vs. LV

No. 4 Denver Broncos

Although they come in last on this list, in many ways, the Broncos had a better season than they probably imagined. While they sit with a losing record at 7-9, they were able to stay right in the middle of the playoff race up until the final couple weeks of the season.

Many talking heads before the season didn’t think that was possible, so they deserve some props for that. Still, the Broncos find themselves in the same unfortunate reality they’ve lived in for several years now: they’re close, but not close enough.

Playoff scenario: Eliminated.

*Top Photo: AP Photo/Isaac Brekken

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