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How can the Texans clinch a playoff spot in Week 18?

We discuss the scenarios that could see the Houston Texans clinching a playoff spot in Week 18.

Derek Barnett #95 of the Houston Texans celebrates a fourth quarter sack with Desmond King II #25 of the Houston Texans during a game against the Tennessee Titans at NRG Stadium on December 31, 2023 in Houston, Texas. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

Update: The Texans have clinched the AFC South title with the Jacksonville Jaguars loss to the Tennessee Titans. Houston will host the Cleveland Browns in the first round of the AFC playoffs.

Update: The Texans have clinched a playoff spot after defeating the Colts 23-19 Saturday night. If the Jaguars lose Sunday against the Titans, Houston will win the AFC South and host a playoff game against the Cleveland Browns.


The Houston Texans enter Week 18 sitting in eighth place in the AFC playoff standings, but control their own fate for punching their ticket in the 2024 NFL Playoffs. They don’t have an easy road on Saturday, but they are road favorites when they travel to face the Indianapolis Colts.

The game kicks off at 8:15 p.m. ET on Saturday and the Texans are 1.5-point favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook. The Colts beat them back in Week 2, but this Texans team enters Saturday’s game with C.J. Stroud returning to form. Stroud missed two weeks after suffering a concussion, but returned in Week 17. A week under his belt should have gotten rid of the rust and has the Texans favored to win.

Houston Texans playoff clinching scenarios - Week 18

To clinch playoff berth:

To clinch AFC South:

  • Win + Jaguars loss or tie

The Jaguars are a 5.5-point favorite on the road against the Titans on Sunday. They need a win to clinch the AFC South. The Steelers are playing the Ravens in Baltimore earlier in the day on Saturday and are 3.5-point favorites. They need a win and/or some help, while Baltimore has locked up the No. 1 seed and will likely play as many reserves as they can on Saturday.