2022 NFL playoff predictions following Week 6 action


Six weeks have been completed of the NFL season, and as of now we have three clear tiers of football teams.

Tier 1: Philadelphia Eagles, Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs
Tier 2: The teams that the teams in Tier 1 will beat in the playoffs
Tier 3: The rest of the NFL

That is it. Three good teams, some stepping-stone teams to give them a run in the postseason, and various piles of slop scattered throughout the league. In the NFC right now, there are four teams in the 16-team conference that have a record above .500, and three of those teams play in the NFC East, which as recently as last year was mocked as being the worst division in football. There are six teams above .500 in the AFC, and 10 total teams sitting at 3-3. To quote Tom Brady, “There is a lot of bad football.”

So this week in the playoff projections, I will also include what these playoff teams are doing well, to at least try and offset the taste of bad football that is going around.

Note: These are not power rankings. These are not picks based off any analytical data or insider knowledge. These are picks based off what I have seen during the season so far. I could be wrong, just like I could be right. Either way, I will be back again next week to offer an updated projection to cover any of my past mistakes.

Check out the projections from weeks past here:

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5


1 Seed: Buffalo Bills (15-2) AFC East Winner
What they do well: Everything. They do everything well. You want something specific? Okay. Football. They do football well.

2 Seed: Kansas City Chiefs (14-3) AFC West Winner
What they do well: Throw the ball into the endzone. The Chiefs lead the league in passing touchdowns, a shocker when Patrick Mahomes is the QB. A league high 7.4% of the Chiefs passes have resulted in a touchdown.

3 Seed: Baltimore Ravens (11-6) AFC North Winner
What they do well: Move the ball on the ground on any given play. The Ravens lead the league in rushing yards per play. Their quarterback is Lamar Jackson, and I can’t help but wonder if there’s a correlation there.

4 Seed: Tennessee Titans (10-7) AFC South Winner
What they do well: Keep the other team off the field. The Titans defense has been on the field for a league low 309 plays. The less time the defense sees the field, the more time we see Derrick Henry grind opposing defenses to dust.

5 Seed: Miami Dolphins (11-6)
What they do well: Go deep. The Dolphins average 8.2 yards a pass attempt, tied for best in the NFL with the Eagles and Patriots. Those deep balls from Tua to Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle are showing results. Or will show results if Tua is ever healthy again.

6 Seed: Los Angeles Chargers (11-6)
What they do well: Third downs. No team has faced a third-down situation more than the Chargers (91). And only the Bengals (39) have more conversions than the Chargers (38) this season.

7 Seed: New York Jets (9-8)!!
What they do well: Make you miss Robert Saleh? Okay not really, for real though, they are good at getting advantageous field position. The average Jets drive starts on the 30 yard line, third best in the NFL behind the Vikings and Patriots.


1 Seed: Philadelphia Eagles (14-3) NFC East Winner
What they do well: Hold on to the ball. The Eagles have had an offensive drive end on a turnover a league best 3.1% of the time. And no team is better at holding on to the ball for a long time too. Their average drive time of 3:08 is the best in the league as well.

2 Seed: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (12-5) NFC South Winner
What they do well: Not throw interceptions. You would expect that out of a quarterback who is kind of supposed to be the best ever at quarterbacking, so is this really even impressive? Even at age 45?

3 Seed: Minnesota Vikings (12-5) NFC North Winner
What they do well: Not get set back by penalties. Only the Rams (24) have fewer penalties on offense than the Vikings (25), and no team has fewer penalty yards than the Vikings (185).

4 Seed: San Francisco 49ers (10-7) NFC West Winner
What they do well: Slow the run game. The 49ers allow 3.3 yards per rushing attempt, best in the league. And the 31 first downs they’ve allowed on the ground is second best behind the Chargers (27). Even more impressive considering the entire defense is in the infirmary.

5 Seed: Dallas Cowboys (13-4)
What they do well: Make QBs sad. The Cowboys’ 24 sacks are tops in the NFL, as are their 80 quarterback pressures. Add in their 28 QB hurries (second in the league) and you understand why quarterbacks would be in a bad mood when facing Dallas.

6 Seed: New York Giants (10-7)
What they do well: Winning late. The Giants are 5-1 now, and a league-high four of their wins have come thanks to a scoring drive in the fourth quarter.

7 Seed: Green Bay Packers (9-8)
What they do well: Limit YAC. The Packers are allowing only 521 yards after completions, good for second best in the league behind the Broncos 424. Apparently limited YAC and having a future HOFer at QB is not enough to get the job done these days.


(2) Chiefs over (7) Jets
What will be a bigger number: the spread or the Jets point total?

(5) Dolphins over (4) Titans
The Titans will limit chances for the Dolphins, but the Fins can cover too much ground too quickly for it to matter. The Titans don’t have the deep firepower to keep up.

(6) Chargers over (3) Ravens
As long as the Ravens, owners of the fourth-worst pass defense in the league, don’t run into a team really good at throwing the ball, they’ll have a chance in the playoffs. The thing about Justin Herbert and the Chargers however…


(2) Buccaneers over (7) Packers
The Packers are barely squeaking into the playoffs because someone has to get that No. 7  seed in the NFC. Believe it or not, getting in because “someone has to” does not make for an inspiring playoff run.

(3) Vikings over (6) Giants
I got the Giants fading down the stretch a bit as they slowly come back to Earth. This is a good Giants team that is a year away from potentially being really good. For now though, the Vikings win this one.

(4) 49ers over (5) Cowboys
The game being at Levis should help the 49ers. The defense being fully healthy should help even more. 49ers win by a field goal. Maybe as time expires. Maybe.


(1) Bills over (6) Chargers
Fun game alert! This shootout will make Quentin Tarantino movies look tame.

(2) Chiefs over (5) Dolphins
Patrick Mahomes and Tua Tagovailoa trading deep balls will be a sight to behold. Seeing Travis Kelce have to be the Chiefs answer to Tyreek Hill will be an even grander sight to behold.

(1) Eagles over (4) 49ers
Even with a fully healthy defense, can the 49ers offense score enough to keep up with an Eagles offense nobody has an answer for? Keep in mind I am not projecting any sort of Christian McCaffrey trade in for the 49ers.

(2) Buccaneers over (3) Vikings
Tom Brady can throw the ball really well. The Vikings defense is not good at stopping teams from throwing the ball. You do the math.


(1) Bills over (2) Chiefs 
The Bills just beat the Chiefs Sunday how we all expected, with defense. So it would be funnier if this game ended on a missed field goal, or any other expectation subverting manner. And for those readers keeping score at home, I have picked the Bills to win this matchup in five out of the seven weeks so far.

(1) Eagles over (2) Buccaneers
No defense looks equipped to handle what the Eagles are serving right now. Nick Siriani starts fielding apology phone calls after the final whistle.


(1) Bills over (1) Eagles
This pick has remained the same from last week, and until ANY team in either conference can show us how to actually beat either of these teams, this is what the pick shall be.

Featured Image Photo Credit: Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images