The National Football League (NFL) playoffs are a single-elimination tournament held at the end of the regular season to determine the NFL champion. Six teams from each of the league’s two conferences qualify for the playoffs based on regular season records, and a tie-breaking procedure exists in the case of equal records.
How does the NFL decide a champion?
Starting in 1933, the NFL decided its champion through a single postseason playoff game, called the NFL Championship Game. During this period, the league divided its teams into two groups, through 1949 as divisions and from 1950 onward as conferences .
How are NFL championship teams ordered in the table below?
In the sortable table below, teams are ordered first by number of wins, then by number of appearances, then by year of first championship won, and finally by year of first appearance. Does not include the AFL or NFL championships won during the same seasons as the AFL–NFL Super Bowl championships before the 1970 AFL–NFL merger.
Why are there 14 teams in the NFL playoffs?
In 1982, the league held a 16-team tournament due to the players strike, which reduced the regular season to just 9 games. The playoffs expanded to 12 teams for the 1990 season, and again to 14 teams for the 2020 season, with an additional game added to this week in each year. Teams who later went on to win the Super Bowl that season are in bold.
How are the playoff seeds determined for each conference?
The seven postseason participants from each conference are seeded as follows: The division champion with the best record. The division champion with the second-best record. The division champion with the third-best record.
How is NFL conference winner determined?
Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference. Strength of victory in all games. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed in all games. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed in all games.
How does the NFL conference system work?
Teams. The NFL consists of 32 clubs divided into two conferences of 16 teams each. Each conference is divided into four divisions of four clubs each. During the regular season, each team is allowed a maximum of 55 players on its roster; only 48 of these may be active (eligible to play) on game days.
What happens if two NFL teams tie in a division?
If two teams are tied for a position, both teams are awarded the ranking as if they held it solely. For example, if Team A and Team B are tied for first in points scored, each team is assigned a ranking of “1” in that category, and if Team C is third, its ranking will still be “3.”
Can two teams from the same division play in the conference championship?
However, two teams from the same division could not meet prior to the conference championship game. Thus, there would be times when the pairing in the divisional playoff round would be the 1 seed vs. the 3 seed and 2 vs.
What determines AFC or NFC?
Both conferences were created as part of the 1970 NFL merger with the rival American Football League (AFL), with all ten of the former AFL teams and three NFL teams forming the AFC while the remaining thirteen NFL clubs formed the NFC.
Can all 4 teams in a division make the playoffs?
If each team went roughly 3-3 inside the division, it would be very possible for all four AFC West teams to end up in the postseason, especially with the expanded playoff format.
What happens if 3 teams have the same record NFL?
In situations where three or more teams from the same division are involved in the procedure, the original seeding of the teams remains the same for subsequent applications of the tiebreaker if the top-ranked team in that division qualifies for a wild card berth.
Can a Super Bowl end in a tie?
In one sentence, the Super Bowl, just like any other playoff game, cannot end in a tie. Should the game remain tied at the end of regulation, the big game will head into an overtime period similar to that of a regular season game. But the overtime itself has a slight difference in the duration.
Can every NFL team have a winning record?
500 at the end of the season, it would be the first time in NFL history that all of the teams from one division finished with a winning record. That means no NFL division has ever had all of its teams finish with a winning record. In 2014, the NFC South had all of its teams finish with a losing record.
Which NFL team has lost the most conference championship games?
The San Francisco 49ers have lost the most games by a team in championships, with 10 losses.TEAMROUNDTDPittsburgh SteelersAFC Championship41Oakland RaidersAFC Championship22Green Bay PackersNFC Championship23Los Angeles RamsNFC Championship1225 more rows
What teams can never play each other in the Super Bowl?
The Patriots and Broncos are tied for the most Super Bowl losses (five). The Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Houston Texans are the four teams to have never appeared in a Super Bowl, although the Browns and Lions won NFL Championships before the merger.
Is the Super Bowl always AFC against NFC?
The American Football Conference (AFC) and National Football Conference (NFC) make up the American National Football League (NFL)….Comparison chart.American Football ConferenceNational Football ConferenceSuper Bowl championships212414 more rows
What divisions did the NFL have?
During this period, the league divided its teams into two groups, through 1949 as divisions and from 1950 onward as conferences . Divisions (1933–1949): Eastern and Western.
What is the history of the National Football League?
Throughout its history, the National Football League (NFL) and other rival American football leagues have used several different formats to determine their league champions, including a period of inter-league matchups determining a true national champion.
How many teams were in the 1978 playoffs?
The league expanded the playoffs to 10 teams in 1978, adding a second wild-card team (a fifth seed) from each conference. The two wild-card teams from each conference (the fourth and fifth seeds) played each other in the first round, called the “Wild Card Playoffs.” The division winners (the first three seeds) would then receive a bye to automatically advance to the Divisional Playoffs, which became the second round of the playoffs. In the divisional round, much like the 1970 playoff format, teams from the same division were still prohibited from playing each other, regardless of seeding. Under the 1978 format, teams from the same division could meet only in the wild-card round or the conference championship. Thus, as before, a divisional champion could only play a divisional foe in the conference championship game.
Where did the Miami Dolphins play in the 1972 playoffs?
This lack of “home-field advantage” was most evident in the 1972 playoffs, when the undefeated Miami Dolphins played the AFC Championship Game at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh against the Steelers, who were undefeated at home during the regular season, but had three losses on the road.
When did the NFL and AFL merge?
After the 1969 season and Super Bowl IV, the AFL and NFL fully merged and underwent a re-alignment for the 1970 season. Three of the pre-merger NFL teams were transferred to the AFC ( Browns, Colts, and Steelers) to level the conferences ( AFC and NFC) at 13 teams each; each conference split into three divisions.
When was the AFL championship game created?
For a list of AFL Championship Games and winners, see American Football League Championship Game. With its creation in 1960, the AFL determined its champion via a single playoff game between the winners of its two divisions, the Eastern and Western.
When did the Super Bowl merge with the NFL?
Following the merger in 1970, the Super Bowl name continued as the game to determine the NFL champion. The most important factor of the merger was that all ten AFL teams joined the NFL in 1970 and every AFL championship game and record is included in NFL record books. The old NFL Championship Game became the NFC Championship Game, …
NFL Tiebreaking Procedures
The seven postseason participants from each conference are seeded as follows:
To Break A Tie Within A Division
If, at the end of the regular season, two or more clubs in the same division finish with identical won-lost-tied percentages, the following steps will be taken until a champion is determined.
To Break A Tie For The Wild-Card Team
If it is necessary to break ties to determine the two Wild-Card clubs from each conference, the following steps will be taken.
Other Tie-Breaking Procedures
Only one club advances to the playoffs in any tie-breaking step. Remaining tied clubs revert to the first step of the applicable division or Wild Card tie-breakers.
Tie-Breaking Procedure For Selection Meeting
Clubs not participating in the playoffs shall select in the first through 20th positions in reverse standings order.
When did the NFL playoffs start?
NFL playoff game results 1933–1966. Beginning with the 1933 season, the NFL featured a championship game, played between the winners of its two divisions. In this era, if there was a tie for first place in the division at the end of the regular season, a one-game playoff was used to determine the team that would represent their division in …
What year did the NFL play the first playoff?
Each of the four division champions played in their respective Conference Championship Game, with those winners advancing to the NFL Championship Game. 1967 was the first year where a pre-scheduled playoff (rather than regular season results) determined participation in the championship. It also marked the first year in which if there was a tie …
Which team was the 2006 Super Bowl champion?
For example, the Indianapolis Colts are regarded as the 2006 NFL Champions even though the Super Bowl was in February 2007. Super Bowl winners are in bold. Click on column headings to sort by teams. For a list of Super Bowl games, see List of Super Bowl champions.
Throughout its history, the National Football League (NFL) and other rival American football leagues have used several different formats to determine their league champions, including a period of inter-league matchups to determine a true national champion.
Following its founding in 1920, the NFL first determined champions through end-of-season standings, switching to a playoff system in 1933 (a one-game playoff was required in 1932).
1920–1932: The early years
At its inception in 1920, the NFL had no playoff system or championship game: the champion was the team with the best record during the season as determined by winning percentage, with ties excluded. This sometimes led to very unusual results, as teams played anywhere from six to twenty league games in a season, and not all teams played the same number of games or against league talent.
1933–1965: The advent of the postseason
Starting in 1933, the NFL decided its champion through a single postseason playoff game, called the NFL Championship Game. During this period, the league divided its teams into two groups, through 1949 as divisions and from 1950 onward as conferences.
• Divisions (1933–1949): Eastern and Western
• Conferences (1950–1952): American and National
1966–1969: NFL vs. AFL—The beginning of the Super Bowl era
1970–present: The Super Bowl era
After the 1969 season and Super Bowl IV, the AFL and NFL fully merged and underwent a re-alignment for the 1970 season. Three of the pre-merger NFL teams were transferred to the AFC (Browns, Colts, and Steelers) to level the conferences (AFC and NFC) at 13 teams each; each conference split into three divisions.
With only six division winners in the newly merged league, the NFL designed an eight-team playo…
NFL championships by franchise
In the sortable table below, teams are ordered first by number of wins, then by number of appearances, then by year of first championship won, and finally by year of first appearance. Does not include the AFL or NFL championships won during the same seasons as the AFL–NFL Super Bowl championships before the 1970 AFL–NFL merger. Does not include AFL titles won from 1960–1965 or AAFC titles won from 1946–1949. Does not include folded NFL teams with zero “…
• NFC Championship Game
• AFC Championship Game
• Players who have won the most NFL championships/Super Bowls