NFL Expands Playoff Teams Starting in 2020

NFL trophy with confetti.

NFL trophy with confetti.

Alton, Mo. – The NFL had a league meeting Tuesday, March 31, 2020, to talk about expanding the playoff teams.

Last season and the season before only twelve total teams could make the playoffs; the 2020 season will have fourteen teams in the playoffs. The team owners approved of this. At least three-fourths of the thirty-two team owners had to vote yes for this to pass. The expanded format allows one more team for each conference to be in the playoffs. This will create six wild card slots. Only the number one seed of the AFC and NFC will get the bye in the post-season Wild Card round. The rest of the teams will play in the Wild Card round.

The number two seed will host the number seven seed, the number three seed will host the number six seed, and the number four seed will be hosting the number five seed in the Wild Card round.  [1] The Wild Card Weekend will have three games on Saturday, January 9, 2021, and three games on Sunday, January 10, 2021.

The NFL also announced that NBC and CBS will still broadcast the additional playoff games. This new playoff format will be a big advantage to the number one seed and will create more competitive games in the last few weeks of the regular season.





  1. ^Patra, Kevin. “Owners approve expanding postseason to 14 teams.”, 31 Mar. 2020, . (go back↩)

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