Home Playoff Game Still Possible for Ravens

The Cincinnati Bengals are the 2022 AFC north division champions, even before they take the field this Sunday to battle the Ravens. The NFL decided to cancel last Monday nights game against the Bengals and Bills, after Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field.

Due to the Ravens loss last Sunday night to the Steelers and the Bengals essentially playing one less game, by default the Bengals have a better winning percentage, thus giving them the AFC north crown. Even though the week 18 game against the Ravens won’t be for the division, both teams will still have a lot to play for after the recent NFL’s decision surrounding the AFC playoffs.

Without the Bills and Bengals finishing their game and it being declared a no contest, not only did it eliminate the Ravens from winning the north, but it also eliminated the Bills from claiming the one seed in the AFC with a win this Sunday. In an attempt to make things more equal, the NFL released a proposal to make some changes to the AFC playoffs should the situations arise where these changes would be needed.

Along with the possibility of a neutral site AFC championship should the Chiefs and Bills meet each other. There is also a situation where the Ravens could be awarded a home playoff game, even without winning the AFC north. If the Ravens defeat the Bengals this Sunday and the Chargers win their game against the Denver Broncos. A coin flip would then decide the home team for the following weeks wild card game against the Ravens and Bengals. If the Ravens defeat the Bengals on Sunday, they will be 2-0 head to head against the Bengals, have more division wins then the Bengals, and have the same number of conference wins.

However, a Ravens loss or a Ravens win and Chargers loss would avoid this coin flip scenario as the Ravens would outright lose the division with a loss. Or with a Chargers loss and a Ravens win the Ravens would jump to the five seed in which they would play the winner of the Jaguars and Titans, set to take place on Saturday. So while it is possible the Ravens will get at least one home playoff game they will still be the six seed in the AFC playoffs with a likely trip to Kansas City that following week in the divisional round should they win their wild card game.

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