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When do the 2022 NFL playoffs start? Updated schedule and start times

When do the 2022 NFL playoffs start, what is the schedule, start times of the games, and how does the playoff bracket work in the NFL?

The 2022 NFL playoffs are nearly upon us, but when does the action officially start? What is the process and the dates for the playoffs this year, when will the games be played, and how many teams will be on a bye on Wild Card Weekend?

When do the NFL playoffs start?

The 2022 NFL playoffs officially get underway on Saturday, January 15, with two Wild Card games. That will kick off a flurry of three days of action, with six games being played in that time. For the first time ever, ESPN will host a Monday Night Football playoff game to close out Wild Card Weekend on January 17.

There will be three games played on Sunday, with the action starting at 1:00 PM ET and running through the Sunday Night Football game at 8:15 PM. The playoffs will then run until Super Bowl LVI on February 13, 2022.

What is the schedule for the 2022 NFL playoffs?

The playoffs will take place across a total of five weeks. The playoffs themselves will be played on four of those weeks, with a break in between the Conference Championships and the Super Bowl, in which time the Pro Bowl will take place.

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Let’s take a look at the full schedule of the 2022 NFL playoffs.

Wild Card Weekend | January 15-17

For the first time, there will be a Monday Night Football game on Wild Card Weekend. The full Wild Card slate is as follows:

Saturday, January 15

Las Vegas Raiders (5) at Cincinnati Bengals (4)
4:30 PM | NBC

New England Patriots (6) at Buffalo Bills (3)
8:15 PM | CBS

Sunday, January 16

Philadelphia Eagles (7) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2)
1:00 PM | FOX

San Francisco 49ers (6) at Dallas Cowboys (3)
4:30 PM | CBS/Nickelodeon/Amazon Prime Video

Pittsburgh Steelers (7) at Kansas City Chiefs (2)
8:15 PM | NBC

Monday, January 17

Arizona Cardinals (5) at Los Angeles Rams (4)
8:15 PM | ABC/ESPN/ESPN2/ESPN+

Divisional Round | January 22-23

January 22 at 4:30 PM
TBD at TBD | TV channel TBD

January 22 at 8:15 PM
TBD at TBD | TV channel TBD

January 23 at 3:05 PM
TBD at TBD | TV channel TBD

January 23 at 6:40 PM
TBD at TBD | TV channel TBD

Conference Championships | January 30

January 30 at 3:05 PM
AFC Championship Game | CBS

January 30 at 6:40 PM
NFC Championship Game | FOX

Super Bowl | February 13

February 13 at 6:30 PM
TBD at TBD | NBC

How will the 2022 NFL playoffs work?

After the playoff format received a major shakeup in 2021, the format will remain the same in 2022. Seven teams from each conference will make the playoffs. The team with the best record will receive a bye in Wild Card Weekend and will host a game in the Divisional Round.

The playoffs will see the highest-seeded team in each conference hosting the lowest remaining seed in that conference. So, on Wild Card Weekend, the No. 2 seed will host the No. 7 seed, the No. 3 seed will host the No. 6 seed, and the No. 4 seed will host the No. 5 seed. Which teams host which in the later rounds depends on the outcome of each matchup.

The highest remaining will always play the lowest remaining seed in each round. For example, if the No. 7 seed defeats the No. 2 seed on Wild Card Weekend, they would then travel to face the No. 1 seed the following week. However, if the No. 2 seed wins, they would then host the highest remaining seed from the other two matchups.

Ben Rolfe is a Senior Managing Editor at Pro Football Network and is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA). You can find him on Twitter @BenRolfePFN.

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