NFL 2021 playoff picture: Updated standings, wild card race, projected matchups as Week 16 rolls on

The home stretch of the 2021 NFL season is here, as Week 16 kicked off Thursday night with a thriller in Nashville. The Titans rallied past the 49ers 20-17 to close in on the AFC South crown. The playoff picture is really taking shape. And both conferences are chock-full of some feisty battles for the 14 combined postseason spots. From the crowded competition in the NFC West to the increasingly muddy race in the AFC North, there are lots of scenarios on the table as we venture deeper into December and through the holiday season.

Below, find an updated 2021 NFL playoff picture, featuring complete postseason standings (with tiebreakers already accounted for), a rundown of wild card contenders and projected opening-weekend playoff matchups for both the AFC and NFC:

AFCChiefs (10-4)Titans (10-5)Patriots (9-5)Bengals (8-6)Colts (9-6)Chargers (8-6)Bills (8-6)On the brink

8. Ravens (8-6)9. Steelers (7-6-1)10. Raiders (7-7)11. Dolphins (7-7)12. Broncos (7-7)13. Browns (7-8)

Out of the race

14. Jets (3-11)*15. Texans (3-11)*16. Jaguars (2-12)*

Note: * = officially eliminated.

Projected wild card matchups(No. 1 Chiefs on bye)No. 7 Bills at No. 2 TitansNo. 6 Chargers at No. 3 PatriotsNo. 5 Colts at No. 4 BengalsNFCPackers (12-3)Cowboys (10-4)Buccaneers (10-4)Rams (10-4)Cardinals (10-5)49ers (8-7)Vikings (7-7)On the brink

8. Saints (7-7)9. Eagles (7-7)10. Washington (6-8)11. Falcons (6-8)

Out of the race

12. Seahawks (5-9)13. Panthers (5-9)14. Giants (4-10)15. Bears (4-10)* 16. Lions (2-11-1)*

Note: * = officially eliminated.

Projected wild card matchups(No. 1 Packers on bye)No. 7 Vikings at No. 2 CowboysNo. 6 49ers at No. 3 BuccaneersNo. 5 Cardinals at No. 4 RamsGet 40% off NFL gear now

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