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Which NFL Teams Will Make And Miss 2023 Playoffs?

Believe it or not, it is almost the middle of the 2023 NFL Season. With Week Eight already here, many can say this season has flown by already. But now is where the fun starts! After the trade deadline, which is October 31st, teams will be trying to stack up wins to qualify for the postseason. This is where good teams become bad, and bad teams become good, like NFL RedZone's "The Witching Hour".

In this article, I will be predicting three teams with below .500 records that will make the playoffs and three teams with a winning record that will miss the postseason. Which teams are contenders and pretenders? Let's evaluate...

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These NFL Teams Will Make The Playoffs

Los Angeles Rams (3-4) 3rd NFC West

After an injury-plagued 5-12 season last year, the Rams have nearly matched their total within the first half of the season, yet they sit in third-place in their division after a 24-17 loss at home versus the Steelers. But this Rams team last healthy were the Super Bowl champions and with Cooper Kupp back from injury, Los Angeles can be a playoff team.

Three out of their four losses were one score games and they still have to play the Packers (2-4), Cardinals (1-6), Commanders (3-4), Saints (3-4) and Giants (2-5). While they have tough matchups versus the 49ers, Ravens, and Cowboys, if the Rams can take care of business against the teams listed above, they can be a nine-ten win team.

Projected Record: 9-8 (6-4 Rest Of Season)

New Orleans Saints (3-4) 3rd NFC South

The Saints brought in Derek Carr to boost their roster in a weak NFC South and one of the easiest schedules in the league. But unfortunately, the team sits a game below .500 with losses to the Bucs, Packers, Texans, and Jaguars. Three of those teams have .500 or less records and each game was one-score besides Tampa Bay.

The NFC South is still up for grabs and the Saints will play the Colts (3-4), Bears (2-5), Vikings (3-4) the next three weeks and Panthers (0-6), Giants (2-5), Bucs (3-3), Rams (3-4), later down the season. That's seven out of their last ten games with teams with .500 or worse records. New Orleans has not impressed many, but they still have a lot of time to make a case for the playoffs and even steal the division too.

Projected Record: 9-8 (6-4 Rest Of Season)

Los Angeles Chargers (2-4) 3rd AFC South

This season has been very tough if you are a Charger fan. Herbert has been playing well for the most part, but there are a lot of problems. The running game has struggled, the offensive line hasn't stopped much and the defense has not been as good as it should be on paper. Many are calling for head coach Brandon Staley's job and it is likely that it will be his final season if nothing changes.

A team seen on paper as a darkhorse Super Bowl contender sits two games below .500 and just about out of the division race led by the 6-1 Chiefs. But there is still hope. With games against the Bears (2-5), Jets (3-3), Packers (2-4), Patriots (2-5), Broncos twice (2-5), and Raiders (3-4), that could be seven wins right there if all things go right. And LA stayed with Kansas City last week for the most part and has potential to upset Baltimore (5-2), Buffalo (4-3), and Kansas City (6-1), the latter who could rest its starters in the final week. There's still time to get situated in Inglewood, but they don't have forever.

Projected Record: 9-8 (7-4 Rest Of Season)

These NFL Teams Will Miss The Playoffs

Cleveland Browns (4-2) 3rd AFC North

The Browns have a Super Bowl roster, except for the most important position, quarterback. With the #1 defense in the league, this should easily be a playoff team. But the problem is that quarterback DeShaun Watson has not played anything like he used to in Houston, where he was one of the league's best quarterbacks. And he has already gotten injured twice this year and his backups have not played well at all.

Yet the Browns are 2-1 without DeShaun and even upset the 49ers. Cleveland can very likely make the playoffs, but unless the quarterback situation gets better, every game could be a 50/50 outcome with possibility of beating the league's best, but also could lose to the league's worst. With tough matchups versus the Seahawks (4-2), Ravens (5-2), Steelers (4-2), Jaguars (5-2), Texans (3-3), and Bengals (3-3), it does not help that they play in the league's toughest division.

Cleveland has to fight with Baltimore and Pittsburgh in this divisional race, while other teams like Buffalo, Houston, Cincinnati, Los Angeles may give competition. It can happen, but I will predict the Browns fall just short.

Prediction: 9-8 (4th AFC North)

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Atlanta Falcons (4-3) 1st NFC South

Like the Saints, the Atlanta Falcons have an easy road ahead of them with games against the Titans (2-4), Vikings (3-4), Cardinals (1-6), Panthers (0-6) and Bears (2-5) still left. But unfortunately I have a feeling that the Falcons could drop one or both games against the Saints and one of the games listed above could be a trap game.

Desmond Ridder has been okay for Atlanta with some games showing flashes as a good quarterback and other times he has too many turnovers. The Falcons defense has kept them in many games this year and we will see how long they can cover the offensive struggles.

Prediction: 8-9 (4-6 Rest Of Season)

Seattle Seahawks (4-2) 2nd NFC South

The Seahawks were a great story last year. They made the playoffs in a year many saw them as a contender for the first overall pick. Geno Smith shined, their draft class was amazing and although they felt short to the 49ers in the Wildcard, the future looked bright. Now sitting at 4-2, this Seahawks team is one game out of the division lead and unfortunately a tough schedule looms.

In the next two weeks, Seattle will face the Browns (4-2) and Ravens (5-2). After that, they have four straight games against playoff teams from last year including the 49ers (5-2) twice, Cowboys (4-2), and Eagles (6-1). They also will take on Pittsburgh (4-2) as well. That's seven teams with winning records in their last eleven games. How many of those can they win? These Seattle team will be tested and if they do make the playoffs, they deserve it.

Prediction: 9-8 (5-7 Rest Of Season)

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