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Welcome to our comprehensive guide to the NFL playoff bracket, where we break down everything you need to know about this exciting postseason tournament. The NFL playoffs are a thrilling time for football fans, as the best teams in the league compete for a chance to hoist the Lombardi Trophy. In this article, we will explain how the NFL playoff bracket works, discuss the different rounds of the playoffs, and highlight some memorable moments from past postseasons.

Understanding the NFL Playoff Bracket

The NFL playoff bracket consists of a total of 12 teams, six from the American Football Conference (AFC) and six from the National Football Conference (NFC). These teams are determined based on their regular-season performance, with the top four teams from each conference earning a spot in the playoffs. The remaining two spots in each conference are awarded to the wild card teams, which are the top two teams with the best records that did not win their division.

Once the playoff teams are determined, they are seeded based on their regular-season performance. The top two teams from each conference receive first-round byes, meaning they automatically advance to the divisional round. The remaining four teams in each conference compete in the wild card round, with the winners advancing to the divisional round to face the top-seeded teams.

The Different Rounds of the Playoffs

The NFL playoffs consist of four rounds: the wild card round, the divisional round, the conference championships, and the Super Bowl.

Wild Card Round

In the wild card round, the third and fourth-seeded teams from each conference host the sixth and fifth-seeded teams, respectively. This round is a single-elimination format, meaning the winners advance to the next round while the losers are eliminated from the playoffs.

Divisional Round

The divisional round follows the wild card round and features the top-seeded teams from each conference facing the winners of the wild card round. Like the wild card round, the divisional round is also a single-elimination format. The winners of this round move on to the conference championships.

Conference Championships

The conference championships determine the two teams that will represent their respective conferences in the Super Bowl. The winners of the divisional round from each conference face off in this round, with the top-seeded team hosting the game. The winners of the conference championships advance to the Super Bowl.

Super Bowl

The Super Bowl is the culmination of the NFL playoffs and is one of the most-watched sporting events worldwide. It features the champions of the AFC and NFC competing for the coveted Lombardi Trophy. The Super Bowl is a single game, with the winner crowned as the NFL champion for that season.

Memorable Moments from Past Postseasons

The NFL playoffs have provided us with countless memorable moments throughout the years. From game-winning drives to incredible comebacks, here are a few highlights:

The Immaculate Reception (1972)

In a wild card game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Oakland Raiders, Steelers running back Franco Harris made an incredible catch known as the “Immaculate Reception.” The play, which involved a deflected pass, helped the Steelers secure a victory and advance in the playoffs.

The Music City Miracle (2000)

In a wild card game between the Tennessee Titans and the Buffalo Bills, the Titans executed a last-second lateral play known as the “Music City Miracle.” The play resulted in a touchdown and a stunning victory for the Titans, propelling them to the next round of the playoffs.

The Philly Special (2018)

In Super Bowl LII, the Philadelphia Eagles pulled off a gutsy trick play known as the “Philly Special.” Quarterback Nick Foles caught a touchdown pass on a fourth-down play, helping the Eagles secure their first-ever Super Bowl victory.

Conclusion

The NFL playoff bracket is an exciting and intense tournament that showcases the best teams in the league. From the wild card round to the Super Bowl, each game brings its own set of thrills and unforgettable moments. Whether you’re a die-hard football fan or a casual observer, the NFL playoffs are a must-watch event that never fails to deliver excitement and drama.

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