NFL live standings and team rankings

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How do NFL standings work?

The NFL standings provide an at-a-glance overview of how individual teams rank within their division, conference, and in the league as a whole. The basics of the NFL standings are straightforward. They provide fans and sports bettors with each team’s win/loss record, and rank them accordingly.

Standings typically provide a breakdown of each team’s record at home and on the road, the total number of points they have scored, and the number of points they have allowed. The standings may also provide details of winning and losing streaks.

In addition to keeping track of how playoff races are going in each division and conference, the NFL standings provide sports bettors with a high-level snapshot of a team’s overall performance. While making betting decisions solely on the basis of a team’s position in the standings is very risky and typically not recommended, the information found in the standings provide a great starting point for looking for value in the gameday odds.

NFL conferences and divisions

The NFL is comprised of 32 franchises. The teams are aligned into two conferences: the American Football Conference (AFC) and the National Football Conference (NFC). Each conference is aligned into four divisions: North, South, East, and West, with each division featuring four teams.

Some divisions are stronger due to their ability to scout and draft high-level talent over other front offices, while others are evenly contested and present a trickier task when looking to identify a divisional champion.

The aim for all teams in the regular season is to top their division and earn a high seed in the playoffs, while the three teams ranked second in each conference earn wild-card spots in the playoffs.

It means that the strength of each team’s schedule is considered crucial to a team’s chances, with experts offering extensive team-by-team analysis ahead of each season. This is important information for bettors looking to place futures bets.

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What are NFL team rankings?

Divisional and conference alignment are crucial to determining which teams make the playoffs. Overall, seven teams from each conference make the playoffs. Each of the teams that finish first in their respective divisions advance to the playoffs, and are joined by three wild card teams.

Wild cards are awarded to the three non-division-winning teams in each conference that have the best win/loss record, regardless of which division they come from. With just 17 games in the regular season schedule, it is not uncommon for teams to end their campaign with identical records. When that happens, an elaborate tiebreaker system is used to determine which team gets the nod.

Once we know which teams are heading to the playoffs, they are ranked in order of their regular season records. The team sporting the best record is pegged as the No. 1 seed, and enjoys a bye through the first weekend of the NFL playoffs, known as Wild Card Weekend. The other three division winners are awarded the No. 2, No. 3, and No. 4 seeds, depending on their win/loss record, while the wild card teams are ranked 5 through 7.

While the top seed enjoys a week off, the remaining six teams face off against each other on Wild Card Weekend, with No. 2. playing against No. 7, No. 3 hosting No. 6, and No. 4 battling No. 5, with the higher-ranked team in the matchup enjoying home-field advantage. The winners of these games advance to the second round, known as NFL Divisional Weekend, where matchups are once again determined by seeding. This continues until the conference champions of the AFC and NFC are crowned, after which attention turns to the Super Bowl.

NFL standings FAQs

What are the current NFL standings?
What are NFL preseason standings?
What is an NFL wild card?

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