The NFL owners have unanimously approved a playoff contingency plan that will expand the field from 14 to 16 teams if games are cancelled due to COVID-19, league commissioner Roger Goodell announced on Tuesday.
The plan would only go into effect if crucial games down the stretch are unable to be played due to virus-related circumstances, and they cannot be made-up in a potential Week 18. If the league is able to play essential seeding and playoff qualifying games in an additional week of games they will.
Ideally, the NFL is still planning the to finish its entire 256-game slate within the initial 17-week window. The other two options are in a worst-case scenario. Goodell added that the league will not re-seed teams if they are forced to expand the postseason tournament.
The NFL had already expanded the playoffs from 12 to 14 teams this offseason, adding an additional Wild Card to each conference.