Chargers' AFC playoff competition will battle ugly weather in Week 16

Jason Reed
New England Patriots v Las Vegas Raiders
New England Patriots v Las Vegas Raiders / Chris Unger/GettyImages
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The Chargers are coming off of the two most impactful weeks in Brandon Staley's tenure with the team as two big wins have put the team in a great spot to make the playoffs. There are still three weeks to play and the job is not finished but the Bolts' wins over the Miami Dolphins and Tennessee Titans are still monumental.

In fact, there is a situation in which the Chargers can clinch a playoff spot as early as Week 16. It would take the team beating the Indianapolis Colts with several other favorable outcomes. It is unlikely but a win over the Colts would still make the playoffs a near shoo-in.

Not only are the Chargers benefitting from having an "easier" opponent that is going to be without Jonathan Taylor, but they are benefitting from where this game is being played as well. The Indianapolis Colts are one of the smart teams in the league that built a dome stadium, so the Bolts are not going to endure the elements on what is shaping out to be an impactful weekend for the weather.

The Chargers' AFC playoff foes will be put to the ringer by this Week 16's weather.

There are several teams to keep an eye on as a Chargers fan this weekend. The easiest way for the Chargers to make the playoffs is to win and see the Las Vegas Raiders, New England Patriots and New York Jets all lose their games.

The Jets will be up first on Thursday Night Football against the Jacksonville Jaguars. While they are avoiding the cold wave that will hit this weekend, they are still going to be battling the elements in New York. It is projected to rain all through the night on Thursday night, making this a wet and sloppy game that might actually benefit the Jets.

The Patriots and Raiders both play on Saturday and will be doing so in frigid temperatures. Foxborough is projected to be under 30 degrees at kick-off with winds at 14 MPH. If you are a Patriots fan, you are hoping that the weather slows down the Cincinnati Bengals.

Vegas, meanwhile, is going to have to deal with 11 degrees at kick-off with 12 MPH winds. The Pittsburgh Steelers are definitely far more suited to play in these kinds of conditions.

Miami is another team to watch but they are dodging the freezing cold weather as the team's game against the Packers is in Miami, not Green Bay. The Baltimore Ravens could also potentially slip down the seeding to open the door for a fifth seed for the Chargers. They will play in 17-degree weather with 15 MPH winds on Saturday.

MUST-READ: Quick observations from the Chargers' win over the Titans

Meanwhile, the Chargers will be cozied up in a dome that is nice and temperature-regulated. Weather really won't come into play for the Chargers until Week 18 against the Denver Broncos and by then, a playoff spot might already be clinched.

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