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NFC Playoff Picture: Aftermath of Week 16


(Image credit Benny Sieu/USA Today Sports)


Written by: Nicholas Mullick


Playoffs are getting closer and closer with each week that passes. Now there is plenty of football left to be played but again it is crunch time for some teams. So until the playoffs hit I will continue to update the current playoff picture for both the AFC and NFC. For this article, I will dive into the NFC.


Playoff Key

X- Clinched Playoff Spot

Y - Clinched Division

Z- Clinched 1st Round Bye


Division Winners (Seed 1-4)

1. Y - Green Bay Packers (12-3)

The Packers are in good shape to potentially take the number one seed. They just need to take care of the Detroit Lions and the Minnesota Vikings. The Packers are on the verge of creating their own version of the Last Dance as this will be Aaron Rodgers last season with the Green Bay Packers.


2. Y - Dallas Cowboys (11-4)

The Dallas Cowboys were excellent last week as they completely deleted the Washington Football Team 56-14. They deserve the win for the NFC East Division.


3. X - Los Angeles Rams (11-4)

Congratulations to the Los Angeles Rams for clinching a playoff berth. The Rams could steal the NFC West division as well from the Cardinals after their recent struggles.


4. Y - Tampa Bay Bay Buccaneers (11-4)

Congratulations to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as they officially clinched a playoff berth and win the NFC South Division.


Wildcard Teams (Seed 5-7)

5. X - Arizona Cardinals (10-5)

Arizona may be a mess right now but due to the strong start, they have officially clinched a playoff spot for the playoffs this season. However, I am very concerned with Arizona right now and this has been known for Kliff Kingsbury to always have a strong start and have a weak conclusion for the season. Hopefully, the team wakes up but there will be playoff football for Arizona.


6. San Francisco 49ers (8-7)

The 49ers gift wrapped a win to the Tennessee Titans last week. This week they have to take care of business against the Houston Texans which I think they will. Then they battle the LA Rams the next week which will be an intriguing game to watch next week.


7. Philadelphia Eagles (8-7)

As I said, the Eagles are in good shape in the present and the future. The Eagles will have three 1st round picks and are currently in playoff contention after they just defeated the New York giants. If they keep this up and beat both the Washington Football Team and the Dallas Cowboys then they should be playing in the playoffs.


In the hunt

8. Minnesota Vikings (7-8)

The Vikings are still in the hunt and have an opportunity to make the playoffs. Especially to save Mike Zimmer’s job as I still believe that he is on the hot seat if the Vikings don't make the playoffs. This season is not on Kirk Cousins however as he has had a good season despite the number of losses the Vikings have.


9. Atlanta Falcons (7-8)

I am not ruling the falcons out of making the playoffs but they have to be inconsistent this season. The Falcons are on the right track with their rebuild and so far Arthur Smith has been a strong coach for this season and Matt Ryan has shown that he has plenty more left in the tank. It will be interesting to see how the Falcons respond.


Tank Teams

10. New Orleans Saints (7-8)

Imagine if the Saints had consistency at the Quarterback position they would have a lot more wins than they would now. This team is all but done especially if Ian Book will be the starter and even as a Notre Dame fan I can say Ian Book is horrible.


11. Washington Football Team (6-9)

Even though mathematically they are still alive I doubt that they make the playoffs now. Especially as they face the Eagles next week and I think they are better than Washington. Also, the last game where they got deleted by the Dallas Cowboys shows how much of a mess they are. Plus the sideline fiasco between Johnathan Allen and Daron Payne shows that the culture is still a dumpster fire in Washington.


Eliminated From Playoff Contention

12. Carolina Panthers (5-10)

The Panthers are now mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. The Panthers are now on the Tank for a higher draft pick


13. Chicago Bears (5-10)

With the Bears now mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. The Bears are now on the Tank for a higher draft pick. Oh, wait they don’t have that the New York Giants do as a result of the Justin Fields trade.


14. Seattle Seahawks (5-10)

With the Seahawks now mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. The Seahawks are now on the Tank for a higher draft pick. Oh, wait they don’t have that the New York Jets do as a result of the Jamal Adams trade.


15. New York Giants (4-11)

With the Giants now mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. The Giants are now on the Tank for a higher draft pick.


16. Detroit Lions (2-12-1)

Detroit is on the Tank for a higher draft pick. The Lions may finally have a good coach in Dan Campbell.


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