Builds momentum to cancel Bills-Bengal game

Buffalo Bills vs Kansas City Chiefs

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The NFL is moving toward resolving the issue caused by the postponement of the Week 17 game between the Bills and Bengals.

The current momentum is pointing towards not resuming the Bills-Bengal game and declaring it a no contest. Playoff seeding would then be determined based on the result of the Week 18 games.

That means the Chiefs will capture the No. 1 seed if they beat the Raiders on Saturday. If the Chiefs lose on Saturday, the Bills will overtake the Patriots on Sunday to become the top seed.

A Bills loss and a Bengals win over the Ravens on Sunday would give Cincinnati the No. 2 seed, with a Bengals win surpassing the Bills based on tiebreaker strength. This would set up a possible Bills-Bengal game in Cincinnati in the Divisional Round.

There is currently no talk about the possibility of the final Bills-Chiefs AFC Championship being played at a neutral site, even though the Bills would have clinched the top seed by defeating Cincinnati and New England.

Canceling the Bills-Bengals would also give the AFC North to Cincinnati. Had the Bengals lost to the Bills, the winner of Sunday’s Ravens-Bengals game would have won the AFC North.

If the Chiefs lose to the Raiders on Saturday, the Bengals could clinch the top seed by beating the Bills and winning this weekend.

The notion of using winning percentage to determine playoff position was first entertained during the pandemic year of 2020, when the league was forced to consider the possibility of canceling several regular-season games. Eventually, there was none.

If this is the solution the league chooses, it is not ideal. But it’s arguably the best of various less-than-ideal options. It’s not finalized yet, but it’s pointing in that direction.

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