When do the NFL playoffs start in 2024? Date, TV schedule & updated AFC, NFC playoff brackets

Winter is coming.

The 2023 NFL season has proved an enthralling watch. Between impressive individual performances, controversial decisions and a steady stream of celebrity relationships, this year’s regular season won’t be forgotten anytime soon.

But now comes the main event. The postseason is here. And it promises to be an intriguing affair.

The Ravens enter the playoffs as the team to beat, having vanquished the 49ers and Dolphins in back-to-back weeks. Not only do they have the likely league MVP, Lamar Jackson. But Baltimore also possesses one of the most well-rounded squads in all of football; how many sides can boast perhaps the sport’s best offense, defense and special teams?

That’s not the only contender expected to make some noise. San Francisco has been a buzzsaw for much of the year. The Eagles, Cowboys and Lions are poised to draw plenty of looks. Cleveland has been a force to be reckoned with under Joe Flacco’s helm. And can you ever really count out the Chiefs with Patrick Mahomes or Bills with Josh Allen?

MORE: Josh Allen, Brandon Aiyuk among notable Pro Bowl snubs for 2024

All of that is to say, this year’s postseason is worth keeping an eye on. Here’s what you need to know as the NFL prepares for its close-up: the 2024 NFL playoffs.

When do the NFL playoffs start in 2024?

  • Wild-card round: Jan. 13-16
  • Divisional round: Jan. 20-21
  • Conference championships: Jan. 28
  • Super Bowl 56: Feb. 11

For the fourth straight season, 14 different teams will make the leap from regular season to playoffs. Seven teams from each conference will take part in the postseason, with the No. 1 seed in each conference being the only sides to earn a bye week during the wild card round. 

Once more, the NFL postseason has been shifted back a week from its former post. In 2021, the league decided on implementing a 17-game schedule. The practice has since continued in 2022 and 2023, pushing the Super Bowl back to the second Sunday in February rather than the first.

WILD-CARD PICKS: Against the spread | Straight-up predictions

NFL playoff bracket

Here’s a look at the final NFL playoff bracket for 2024:

AFC

1. Baltimore Ravens (BYE)
2. Miami Dolphins vs. 7. Indianapolis Colts
3. Kansas City Chiefs vs. 6. Buffalo Bills
4. Jacksonville Jaguars vs. 5. Cleveland Browns

NFC 

1. San Francisco 49ers (BYE)
2. Dallas Cowboys vs. 7. Green Bay Packers
3. Detroit Lions vs. 6. Los Angeles Rams
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. 5. Philadelphia Eagles

NFL playoff schedule 2023

Wild-card round

Saturday, Jan. 13

Matchup Time (ET) TV Live stream
TBD vs. TBD TBD Peacock, fubo
TBD vs. TBD 4:30 p.m. NBC Peacock, fubo

Sunday, Jan. 14

Matchup Time (ET) TV Live stream
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo

Monday, Jan. 15

Matchup Time (ET) TV Live stream
TBD vs. TBD 8:15 p.m. ESPN, ABC ESPN+, fubo

Divisional round

Saturday, Jan. 20

Matchup Time (ET) TV channel Live stream
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo

Sunday, Jan. 21

Matchup Time (ET) TV channel Live stream
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo
TBD vs. TBD TBD TBD TBD, fubo

Conference championships

Sunday, Jan. 28

Matchup Start time TV channel Live stream
TBD vs. TBD TBD CBS Paramount+, fubo
TBD vs. TBD TBD Fox Fox Sports app, fubo

Super Bowl 58

Sunday, Feb. 11

Matchup Start time TV channel Live stream
TBD vs. TBD TBD CBS Paramount+, fubo

How do the NFL playoffs work?

The NFL postseason takes place in 2024, although its participants earned qualification due to their results during the 2023 NFL season. 14 teams — seven from each conference — will take part in the festivities, which last from the second weekend in January to the second Sunday in February.

Just one team in each conference will receive a bye week during wild-card weekend. That is dictated by which team finished with the best record in the AFC and NFC, respectively. Those teams will maintain home-field advantage for as long as they remain in the postseason.

The seeding for the 2024 playoffs is as follows. In each conference, the division winner with the best record will receive No. 1 seeding. Seeds No. 2 through 4 will be comprised of the remaining division winners, ranked from best record to worst. The team with the best record that failed to capture a division title will receive the No. 5 seed, while the Nos. 6 and 7 seeds will go to the second- and third-best non-division winners, respectively.

Ties in the standings are a real possibility. Have no fear, though. The NFL employs a complex series of official tie breaking procedures. Here’s a look at what they are in the 2023 NFL season.

MORE: Why does the NFL refuse to address wild card seeding issues year after year?

To break a tie in division standings:

(Between two teams)

  1. Head-to-head (best won-lost-tied percentage in games between the clubs).
  2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the division.
  3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games.
  4. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference.
  5. Strength of victory.
  6. Strength of schedule.
  7. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed.
  8. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed.
  9. Best net points in common games.
  10. Best net points in all games.
  11. Best net touchdowns in all games.
  12. Coin toss

(Among three or more teams)

  1. Head-to-head (best won-lost-tied percentage in games among the clubs).
  2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the division.
  3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games.
  4. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference.
  5. Strength of victory.
  6. Strength of schedule.
  7. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed.
  8. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed.
  9. Best net points in common games.
  10. Best net points in all games.
  11. Best net touchdowns in all games.
  12. Coin toss

To break a tie in wild-card standings:

(Between two teams)

  1. Head-to-head, if applicable.
  2. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference.
  3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games, minimum of four.
  4. Strength of victory.
  5. Strength of schedule.
  6. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed.
  7. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed.
  8. Best net points in conference games.
  9. Best net points in all games.
  10. Best net touchdowns in all games.
  11. Coin toss.

(Among three or more teams)

  1. Apply division tiebreaker to eliminate all but the highest-ranked club in each division before proceeding to Step 2. The original seeding within a division upon application of the division tiebreaker remains the same for all subsequent applications of the procedure that are necessary to identify the two wild-card participants.
  2. Head-to-head sweep. (Applicable only if one club has defeated each of the others or if one club has lost to each of the others.)
  3. Best won-lost-tied percentage in games played within the conference.
  4. Best won-lost-tied percentage in common games, minimum of four.
  5. Strength of victory.
  6. Strength of schedule.
  7. Best combined ranking among conference teams in points scored and points allowed.
  8. Best combined ranking among all teams in points scored and points allowed.
  9. Best net points in conference games.
  10. Best net points in all games.
  11. Best net touchdowns in all games.
  12. Coin toss

The team with the lower seed gets home-field advantage in each playoff game from the wild-card round through the AFC and NFC championship games. The Super Bowl will be played at a neutral site; this year, that will be Glendale, Ariz.

Current NFL playoff picture

Here’s how the standings in both conferences break down after the final week of the 2023 NFL regular season.

Seed Team Record Clinched
1. Ravens 13-3 AFC North
2. Dolphins 11-5 AFC East
3. Chiefs 10-6 AFC West
4. Jaguars 9-7 AFC South
5. Browns 11-5 Wild card
6. Bills 10-6 Wild card
7. Colts 9-7 Wild card
Seed Team Record Clinched
1. 49ers 12-4 NFC West
2. Cowboys 11-5 NFC East
3. Lions 11-5 NFC North
4. Buccaneers 8-8 NFC South
5. Eagles 11-5 Wild card
6. Rams 9-7 Wild card
7. Packers 8-8 Wild card

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