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NFL playoff clinching scenarios, Week 16: I'm here for the Bills and Chiefs

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The NFL playoff picture features some old 49ers friends. We take a look at a few potential rooting interests heading into the final two weekends of the regular season, along with Week 15 playoff clinching scenarios.

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers will not be participating in this year's playoffs, but there will be some folks potentially around for us to for in January. Some folks may decide to abandon football entirely until after the Super Bowl, while others will still pay close attention to the playoffs.

I will continue watching football, and I have found a few players and teams to cheer for in January. I think the notion of a "second team" requires some very specific reasons, but that doesn't mean we can't pull for other teams or players over the next month. For example, in the AFC I'll be pulling for the Bills and Chiefs this weekend. I would not mind seeing Boobie Dixon and Alex Smith get into the playoffs. They are both sitting on the outside looking in, sitting at 8-6 with the San Diego Chargers, behind the two wild card teams at 9-5.

Both teams are on the road this weekend, with Kansas City in Pittsburgh, and Buffalo in Oakland. Here is the weekend schedule for the various AFC wild card contenders:

Chargers (8-6) @ 49ers
Ravens (9-5) @ Texans
Chiefs (8-6) @ Steelers (9-5)
Bills (8-6) @ Raiders
Broncos @ Bengals (9-4-1)

On the NFC side of things, I very well could find myself rooting for Arizona the rest of the way. Their defense has carried them to an 11-3 record, and a chance to clinch home field through the Super Bowl (Arizona is hosting this year). I keep thinking they'll slip, but somehow they overcome the numerous injuries they have dealt with in 2014. They are potentially starting their third string quarterback this weekend, and are the biggest 11-3 home underdog in NFL history. Drew Stanton practiced on Thursday, but the expectation is that Ryan Lindley will get the start. It is easy to see them losing, but would anything really surprise you at this point?

For this weekend, several teams can clinch a playoff berth, division title, or first round bye. Currently four teams have clinched playoff berths:

Division champs: New England Patriots, Indianapolis Colts, Denver Broncos
Wild card berth: Arizona Cardinals

Here are the various clinching scenarios in place for this weekend.

NFC

Arizona Cardinals (vs. Seattle Seahawks)

Clinches NFC West and home-field advantage throughout NFC playoffs with:

1) Win

Detroit Lions (at Chicago Bears)

Clinches the NFC North with:

1) Win plus Packers loss

Clinches a first-round bye with:

1) Win plus Packers loss plus Cowboys loss

Clinches a playoff berth with:

1) Win OR
2) Tie plus Eagles loss or tie OR
3) Eagles loss

Dallas Cowboys (vs. Indianapolis Colts)

Clinches NFC East division with:

1) Win plus Eagles loss or tie OR
2) Tie plus Eagles loss

Clinches a playoff spot with:

1) Win plus Packers loss or tie plus Lions loss or tie (as long as both don't tie)

Seattle Seahawks (at Arizona Cardinals)

Clinches a playoff spot with:

1) Win plus Eagles loss or tie OR
2) Win plus Lions loss or tie OR
3) Win plus Packers loss or tie OR
4) Tie plus Eagles loss OR 
5) Tie plus Lions loss or Packers loss OR
6) Eagles loss plus Cowboys win or tie

Green Bay Packers (at Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Clinches a playoff spot with:

1) Win plus Eagles loss or tie OR
2) Win plus Cowboys win or tie OR
3) Tie plus Eagles loss OR
4) Tie plus Eagles tie plus Cowboys win or tie OR
5) Eagles loss plus Cowboys win or tie

New Orleans Saints (vs. Atlanta Falcons)

Clinches NFC South with:

1) Win plus Panthers loss

AFC

Cincinnati Bengals (vs. Denver Broncos)

Clinches the AFC North with:

1) Win plus Steelers loss plus Ravens loss or tie

Clinches a playoff spot with:

1) Win OR
2) Tie plus Ravens loss OR
3) Tie plus Chiefs loss or tie plus Chargers loss or tie OR
4) Chiefs loss plus Chargers loss plus Bills loss or tie

New England Patriots (at New York Jets)

Clinches home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs with:

1) Win plus Broncos loss

Clinches a first-round bye with:

1) Win OR
2) Tie plus Colts loss or tie OR
3) Colts loss plus Bengals loss or tie plus Steelers loss or tie plus Ravens loss or tie

Denver Broncos (at Cincinnati Bengals)

Clinches a first-round bye with:

1) Win OR
2) Tie plus Colts loss or tie

Pittsburgh Steelers (vs. Kansas City Chiefs)

Clinches a playoff berth with:

1) Win

Baltimore Ravens (at Houston Texans)

Clinches a playoff berth with:

1) Win plus Steelers loss plus Bengals loss OR
2) Win plus Chiefs loss or tie plus Chargers loss or tie OR
3) Tie plus Chiefs loss plus Chargers loss plus Bills loss or tie