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INDIANAPOLIS – The Colts took a giant step towards the playoffs with their win over the Patriots in Week 15.

It was time for the Colts to do their part in adding to the help they were getting from other AFC teams, and they did that with a very important win.

At 8-6, the Colts are currently in the 5th spot of the AFC (remember, the NFL has 18 weeks/17 games this season). If the playoffs started today, the Colts would travel to take on the No. 4 seed Bengals in the Wild Card Round of the Playoffs.

When you look at the standings below, you’ll again notice the Colts are one of four Wild Card teams currently with an 8-6 record. They top the rest due to a 7-3 conference record, which is the first tiebreaker when involving multiple teams that didn’t all play each other head-to-head.

Per FiveThirtyEight, the Colts have an 89 percent chance at making the playoffs. That number could fluctuate by about 17 percent depending on the win/loss result versus the Cardinals this Saturday.

The Colts could very well make the playoffs with just 1 more win, but 2 should without question secure another postseason trip.

A couple of things to note on the Colts’ current situation:

-The magic number for the Titans (10-4) to clinch the AFC South is still at 2. That’s a combination of Titans wins and Colts losses in the final 3 weeks of the season. See below for the remaining schedules for both teams.

-Continue to cheer for the division leaders to win, especially when playing fellow Wild Card teams. If you look at the Chiefs, all 3 of their final games are against teams currently in the Wild Card mix.

-The Patriots remain the lone AFC team that has a better conference record than the Colts. That’s massive for the Colts in establishing tiebreakers against teams they didn’t play.


Here’s a look at the AFC standings with 3 weeks remaining (Raiders and Browns still play on Monday):


Division Leaders

1. Chiefs (10-4, 5-4):  Steelers, @Bengals, @Broncos

2. Patriots (9-5, 7-2): Bills, Jaguars, @Dolphins

3. Titans (9-5, 6-4): 49ers, Dolphins, @Texans

4. Bengals (8-6, 6-3): Ravens, Chiefs, @Browns


Wild Card Teams

5. Colts (8-6, 7-3): @Cardinals, Raiders, @Jaguars

6. Chargers (8-6, 5-4): @Texans, Broncos, @Raiders

7. Bills (8-6, 5-5): @Patriots, Falcons, Jets


Outside Looking In

8. Ravens (8-6, 5-5): @Bengals, Rams, Steelers

9. Browns (7-6, 4-5): Raiders, @Packers, @Steeers, Bengals

10. Steelers (7-6-1, 5-4): @Chiefs, Browns, @Ravens

11. Dolphins (7-7, 5-5): @Saints, @Titans, Patriots

12. Broncos (7-7, 3-6): @Raiders, @Chargers, Chiefs

13. Raiders (6-7, 4-4): @Browns, Broncos, @Colts, Chargers