Though no decision has been made yet, the NFL is leaning toward not resuming the Bills-Bengals game that was suspended after Damar Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest in the middle of Monday’s game in Cincinnati, according to ProFootballTalk.
The Bills safety has shown “signs of improvement” since Tuesday, the team said Wednesday afternoon.
If the game is ruled a no contest, playoff seeding would be determined from Week 18 results. The Chiefs (13-3) would capture the No. 1 seed with a win over the Raiders on Saturday. As for the Bills (12-3), they still could become the top seed with a win over the Patriots on Sunday and a Chiefs’ loss on Saturday.
According to the website, the Bengals (11-4) still could get the No. 2 seed if they beat the 10-6 Ravens and the Bills lose on the strength of a victory tiebreaker. If that happened, there would be a chance of a Bills-Bengals game in the divisional round.
The Ravens would lose any chance of winning the AFC North if the Bills-Bengals game doesn’t get played. If the Bengals had lost to the Bills, the winner of Sunday’s Ravens-Bengals game would have won the AFC North.
This isn’t the first time the thought of winning percentages would determine NFL playoff positioning. It was brough up during the pandemic year of 2020, when the league braced for the possibility of multiple regular-season games being canceled. In the end, none were.
Though this is the likely decision the NFL could make, it’s not the only one. The NFL conceivably could reschedule the Bills-Bengals game a week after the Week 18 contests and push the playoffs back a week, thus eliminating the week off between the championship games and the Super Bowl.