The Tennessee Titans suffered a major setback in Week 16 of the NFL season. The Titans entered the week 8-6 on the season and appeared to have a winnable game to go 9-6. However, instead Tennessee fell to the Jacksonville Jaguars to fall to 8-7. The result may prove to be a big one if they do not make the NFL playoffs.

The Titans have some hope still

The Titans are not in the Wild-Card picture any longer as the Miami Dolphins improved to 10-5 on the season with an overtime victory against the Buffalo Bills. The Kansas City Chiefs also have 10 wins on the season, meaning that the bar is set at least that high to claim the 2nd Wild Card.

If Tennessee is to make the post-season, then their only hope is to win their division. That does make explaining their playoff chances pretty simple: Tennessee fans need to hope that the Houston Texans lose their games.

Houston enter Week 16 with an 8-6 record. At time of writing they still had to play their Week 16 game, a late one on Saturday as hosts of the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals themselves are out of playoff contention so that motivational factor isn't there for Cincy. If Houston lose to the Bengals then both the Texans and Titans will be 8-7 following Week 16. That will create a winner take all game in Week 16 as Houston travel to Tennessee.

However, if Houston beat Cincinnati, the Texans will improve to 9-6 and they will have one more win compared to Tennessee.

That makes things pretty tricky. In this scenario Houston would win the division without tiebreakers with a win or tie at Tennessee next week. But if the Titans and Texans both finish 9-7 then things come down to tiebreakers. In that scenario, the teams would be 1-1 against each other on head-to-heads, meaning the first tiebreaker would solve nothing.

It would then come down to in-division records and that's where Houston take the cake. They can do no worse than 5-1 in divisional games while Tennessee can do no better than 3-3.

Tennessee need Houston to lose Saturday

What does it all mean for playoff scenarios? It means that Tennessee can be eliminated from post-season contention on Saturday evening with a Houston victory.

Expressed from Houston's point of view, the Texans can clinch a post-season berth with a win over Cincinnati. If Houston fail, then they have to go into Tennessee next week and secure at least a tie.

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