It’s super, it’s wild, it’s a super wild weekend.
The NFL’s first foray of Week 18 turned out to be quite hectic: The Jaguars beat the Colts, knocking Indy out of the dance, while the Raiders-Chargers “Sunday Night Football” showdown came. oh so close to a tie
With the playoff image now established, the second year of a 14-team tournament is underway and presumably here to stay. There is a series of intriguing matchups to kick off the weekend, now spanning three days.
The NFL playoffs are here. Here’s what you need to know heading into this weekend:
NFL Playoff Group 2022
As in 2021, there is a 14-team playoff field this year. Here’s how they’re seeded and their opening weekend showdown:
- Tennessee Titans (1, Bye)
- Kansas City Chiefs (2) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (7)
- Buffalo Bills (3) vs. New England Patriots (6)
- Cincinnati Bengals (4) vs. Las Vegas Raiders (5)
- Green Bay Packers (1, Bye)
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2) vs. Philadelphia Eagles (7)
- Dallas Cowboys (3) vs. San Francisco 49ers (6)
- Los Angeles Rams (4) vs. Arizona Cardinals (5)
NFL Wild Card Showdowns
Kansas City Chiefs (No. 2 seed, 12-5) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (No. 7 Seed, 9-7-1)
The Steelers needed the help of the Jaguars (what NFL world we live in) to have a shot at making the playoffs, and my gosh, the Jags did it. Now, Mike Tomlin and the Steelers have a chance to send Ben Roethlisberger into the twilight. It won’t be an easy task as they face the Chiefs, who went 9-1 in their last eight regular-season games.
Buffalo Bills (No. 3 Seed, 11-6) vs. New England Patriots (No. 6 Seed, 11-6)
Welcome to the dance, Mac Jones. The Patriots and Bills went all the way for the AFC East, and after a sloppy and disgusting game against the Jets, the Bills finally emerged with the division. Now, in a decisive AFC East game, the Patriots have a chance to exact revenge on the Bills and nullify their divisional victory.
Cincinnati Bengals (No. 4 seed, 10-7) vs. Las Vegas Raiders (No. 5 Seed, 10-7)
The work that Interim Raiders head coach Rich Bisaccia has done is admirable. Coming into overtime in Week 18 against the division rivals Chargers, the Raiders took home the victory and earned their ticket to the playoffs despite a tremendously difficult season, for a number of reasons. They are not far behind with the Bengals and their high-powered offense, anchored by Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase.
Tampa Bay Buccaneeers (No. 2 Seed, 13-4) vs. Philadelphia Eagles (No. 7 Seed, 9-8)
Expect the expected and the unexpected. Everyone thought the Buccaneers, running back after their victory in Super Bowl 55, would make the playoffs. Not many expected Jalen Hurts, Nick Sirianni and the Eagles to make the playoffs. But that’s what happened, and now Hurts has a chance to continue to prove to the Philadelphia bosses that he can be the passer of the future.
Dallas Cowboys (No. 3 Seed, 12-5) vs. San Francisco 49ers (No. 6 seed, 10-7)
Time to get on the road-back machine: The Cowboys-49ers playoff game is something straight out of the ’80s and’ 90s, but with a modern twist. Reports of Kyle Shanahan’s death have been greatly exaggerated: The 49ers did what they had to do and held the Rams at bay in the final game of their season, finishing 7-3 in their last 10 overall.
Los Angeles Rams (No. 4 seed, 12-5) vs. Arizona Cardinals (No. 5 seed, 11-6)
The Cardinals stumbled through the playoffs, going 2-4 from their bye week to end the season, eventually handing the NFC West to the Rams. Now the two teams meet in a decider for their 2021 series, but this time, the stakes are much, much higher.
NFL Wild Card TV Schedule
Unlike 2021, this year’s super wild card weekend is not split into two days of triples headers: rather, the NFL has a playoff showdown on Monday night, with the Cardinals and Rams culminating in the first weekend. week of the 2021 playoffs.
This is the full schedule of this weekend’s matches:
Saturday, January 15
|Bengals vs. Raiders||4:30 pm ET||NBC / Peacock|
|Patriots vs. Buffalo||8:15 pm ET||CBS / Paramount +|
Sunday, January 16
|Buccaneers vs. Eagles||1 pm ET||Fox|
|Cowboys vs 49ers||4:30 pm ET||CBS / Nickelodeon / Paramount +|
|Chiefs vs. Steelers||8:15 pm ET||NBC / Peacock|
Monday, January 17
|Rams vs. Cardinals||8:15 pm ET||ESPN / ABC|
NFL playoff group, 2022 seeds
|one.||tennessee titans||12-5||AFC South Champion|
|two.||Kansas City Chiefs||12-5||AFC West champion|
|3.||buffalo bills||11-6||AFC East champion|
|Four.||Cincinnati Bengals||10-7||AFC North Champion|
|5.||las vegas raiders||10-7||Wildcard|
|6.||New England Patriots||10-7||Wildcard|
|one.||Green Bay Packers||13-4||NFC North Champion|
|two.||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||13-4||NFC South Champion|
|3.||Dallas Cowboys||12-5||NFC East champion|
|Four.||Los Angeles Rams||12-5||NFC West champion|
|6.||San Francisco 49ers||10-7||Wildcard|