These 14 NFL Teams Will Reach the Playoffs in 2023

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The Kansas City Chiefs and Detroit Lions begin NFL festivities this Thursday night, a matchup between teams expected to win their respective divisions.

These 14 NFL Teams Will Reach the Playoffs in 2023

Per oddsmakers, the Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles are the frontrunners to headline Super Bowl LVIII, as they did seven months ago.

To get there, they must pass through this playoff gauntlet. Consider the following 14 teams as playoff-bound predictions for 2023.

AFC

No. 1 Seed = Kansas City Chiefs

These 14 NFL Teams
Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Nick Bolton (32) celebrates after returning a fumble recovery for a touchdown against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half in Super Bowl LVII at State Farm Stadium in Glendale on Feb. 12, 2023. NFL Super Bowl Lvii Kansas City Chiefs vs. Philadelphia Eagles. © Patrick Breen/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Unless Patrick Mahomes gets injured, this team is returning to the postseason. There’s just no other way around it. Write it in ink.

No. 2 Seed = New York Jets

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Listen, the Aaron Rodgers experiment will work, not because he’ll return to MVP form, but because the Jets defense is already exemplary. All they need is a competent quarterback distributing the pigskin. Rodgers is that and then some.

No. 3 Seed = Baltimore Ravens

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Folks have wondered for a few years what Lamar Jackson can achieve with a reasonable stable of weapons. They’ll finally find out in 2023 as the Ravens explode with a deep playoff push.

No. 4 Seed = Jacksonville Jaguars

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The AFC South stinks, and Jacksonville should have a cakewalk to a division crown. Trevor Lawrence will enter MVP conversations for the first time and pretty much stay there for a decade.

No. 5 Seed = Cincinnati Bengals

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Cincinnati lives in a murderous division and won’t have a picnic traveling to the postseason. It will encounter some adversity via injury or otherwise and check in around 10-7.

No. 6 Seed = Denver Broncos

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The Broncos will reach the playoff for the first time in eight years an ungodly long drought. While Russell Wilson won’t return to All-Pro form, he will perform quite well, and Sean Payton will right the ship.

No. 7 Seed = Pittsburgh Steelers

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This team’s defense is impressive, and its quarterback is quietly emerging. The Steelers don’t have the oomph to reach the Super Bowl yet, but they will sneak in the back half of the postseason.

NFC

No. 1 Seed = Philadelphia Eagles

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The Eagles could experience a wee bit of a Super Bowl runner-up hangover, but if any team is built to withstand such phenomena, it’s them. Their offensive and defensive trenches are terrific, and those alone will propel them to the No. 1 seed.

No. 2 Seed = Minnesota Vikings

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The Brian Flores experiment in Minnesota will click early in September or October, and he’ll drag the Vikings defense to respectability. If Minnesota could win 13 games with the NFL’s third-worst defense per points allowed, imagine their ceiling with a regular defense.

No. 3 Seed = San Francisco 49ers

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Only in the No. 3 seed because of a lost tiebreak to the Vikings, San Francisco will return to the playoffs, thanks to a filthy good defense and Kyle Shanahan’s innovative ways.

No. 4 Seed = New Orleans Saints

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The Saints exist in a shaky division and get some quarterback stability for the first time since Drew Brees began to decline in 2020. New Orleans’ defense is sturdy, so adding Carr should be good for a 10-7 record or so. They’ll beat up on NFC South opponents.

No. 5 Seed = Dallas Cowboys

Which Cowboys RB Do Vikings Need to Stop?
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Like the Eagles, Dallas has a tremendous roster. Unlike the Eagles, they can’t get over the hump at least not in the last three decades. Mike McCarthy has one more chance to reach the NFC Championship or beyond.

No. 6 Seed = Green Bay Packers

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Nobody should be writing Packers-themed obituaries. Haven’t we learned our lesson by now? Green Bay won’t be as deadly as most of the Aaron Rodgers era, but we’re cynical enough to believe they’re not dead.

No. 7 Seed = Los Angeles Rams

Cooper Kupp Disagrees with Justin Jefferson's WR Assessment
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The Rams have been left for dead, mainly because their roster is devoid of talent and experience. Yet, this could be Sean McVay’s snazziest trick yet, guiding a team of young unknowns to prominence. We’re taking Los Angeles to scoot into the postseason with a 9-8 record.


Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.

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