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Chargers will know if they are still alive when their game starts

Chargers Getty Images

The NFL attempts to construct the Week 17 slate of games to ensure maximum drama.  With eight games at 1:00 p.m. ET, seven at 4:25 p.m. ET, and a playoff play-in game between the Eagles and Cowboys at 8:30 p.m. ET, the league once again has done a great job of it.

But there’s one situation that will take a little excitement away from the final Sunday of the regular season.  With a four-team scrum unfolding for the sixth seed in the AFC, the San Diego Chargers will know when their home game against the Chiefs begins at 4:25 p.m. ET (or not long after it starts, at the latest) whether a victory will propel the Chargers into the playoffs.  Since the only way to avoid that would be to start the Chargers game at 10:00 a.m. local time, it’s an unavoidable complication.

The other three teams that make up the chase for the last golden ticket square off at 1:00 p.m. ET.  If the Ravens or Dolphins win, the Chargers will know they can’t get in.

That said, the Chiefs-Chargers game will still carry some drama, if both the Ravens and Dolphins prevail in their early games.  Under that scenario, a Chargers win sends Miami to the playoffs and a Chiefs win gives Baltimore the berth.

If the Ravens and Dolphins lose and the Steelers beat the Browns, a Chargers win gives San Diego the sixth seed; a loss hands it to the Steelers.  If all three of the contenders lose their 1:00 starts, the Chargers remain win-and-in.  A loss would give the spot to the Ravens.

Confused?  Get used to it.  Only one of 12 specific playoff seeds — the Chiefs with No. 5 in the AFC — have been locked in.  By the time the Eagles-Cowboys game begins, the dust will have mostly settled.

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3 Responses to “Chargers will know if they are still alive when their game starts”
  1. bigbenownsthenfl says: Dec 29, 2013 10:14 AM

    GO STEELERS! #WE BELIEVE

  2. alshonbrandontandem says: Dec 29, 2013 10:19 AM

    Would love to see the Steelers make it at 8-8.

  3. rodh32340 says: Dec 29, 2013 12:56 PM

    The Ravens have backed into the Playoff final seed for the last 3 weeks in a row and not thru any play of their own! It shows how really bad the teams are this year at Wild Card.

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