NFC playoff picture: Falcons are in, Seahawks are out

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Monday night’s game was a big one in the NFC playoff race.

The Falcons’ win over the Seahawks gives Atlanta the sixth and final spot in the playoff picture, while Seattle is on the outside looking in.

Here’s how it all looks before Thanksgiving:

LEADERS
1. Eagles (9-1): The class of the conference.

2. Vikings (8-2): The Vikings have a two-game lead over the NFC North now, but if they lose on Thanksgiving the lead would drop to one, and the Lions would have the tiebreaker.

3. Saints (8-2): Surging ahead in the NFC South with an eight-game winning streak.

4. Rams (7-3): The loss to the Vikings may end up costing the Rams a bye week.

5. Panthers (7-3): The Panthers have a game lead over the rest of the wild card field.

6. Falcons (6-4): Atlanta owns the head-to-head tiebreaker over both the other 6-4 teams, the Lions and Seahawks.

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN
7. Lions (6-4): Golden Tate‘s overturned touchdown on the last play of the Lions’ loss to the Falcons is looking costly right now.

8. Seahawks (6-4): Injuries are taking a toll on Seattle’s playoff hopes.

9. (Packers (5-5): Without Aaron Rodgers it’s hard to imagine they make a playoff run.

10. Cowboys (5-5): The injury to left tackle Tyron Smith has been devastating.

11. Washington (4-6): Kirk Cousins is playing well, but injuries are taking their toll on the rest of the roster.

12. Cardinals (4-6): Just playing out the string, with Blaine Gabbert under center.

13. Buccaneers (4-6): Maybe the NFC’s most disappointing team.

14. Bears (3-7): Chicago has no hope.

15. Giants (2-8): Sunday’s upset of the Chiefs doesn’t change the fact that the Giants are going nowhere.

16. 49ers (1-9): Still have a chance of passing the Browns for the first pick in the draft.

81 responses to “NFC playoff picture: Falcons are in, Seahawks are out

  1. There are a lot of twist and turns between now and the end of the season.
    These early season “who’s in” mean nothing at this point.

  2. 10. Cowboys (5-5): The injury to left tackle Tyron Smith has been devastating.

    It has but there’s two other major personnel problems, Elliot and maybe the the biggest of all, Sean Lee.

  3. The Vikings have a two-game lead over the NFC North now, but if they lose on Thanksgiving the lead would drop to one, and the Lions would have the tiebreaker.

    Or… They’ll be up 3 games with 5 games to go.

    P.S. Do the Eagles play anyone this year?

  4. .
    The Saints opened the season with two very sloppy losses to Minnesota and the Patriots. Following the home loss to New England, they’ve reeled off eight very impressive wins. One could wonder if Belichick and close friend, Sean Peyton had a candid conversation about the Saints strengths and weaknesses following their loss to the Patriots.
    .

  5. It’s crazy to think that as dominant as the rams, Vikings, and saints have looked (especially the rams now at 7-3), one or more of those teams could miss the playoffs even if they went 10 and 6. The falcons, panthers, lions, and Seahawks are all right there on their heels.

  6. The Vikes will beat the Lions on Thanksgiving. Their defense is dominating and their offense is pretty good too.

  7. The Eagles be in the class of the NFC is subjective, many thought the Rams were also until they’ve actually faced a real team.

  8. Eagles are good, but class of the conference? Little premature don’t you think? The Vikings have only been a complete team all year. So what happens if/when the Eagles offense runs into the Vikings defense? The same thing that happened to the #1 scoring offense last week, NOTHING.

    However, the Vikings offense moves the ball. So there you have it.

  9. If Patriots played in NFC they would never be a “dynasty” if they plated in NFC this season they would be about 5-5….They are not very good..They beat a Raiders team that hates their coa ch because of who he voted for so they are purposely losing games

  10. I’m really impressed by the team that lost their All-Pro LT, their athletic MLB, who makes all the calls and runs the show on defense, and their most-explosive RB. And their kicker.

    (hint: they’re 9-1)

  11. With their nasty defenses, Iggles, Vikes and Panthers clearly a leg up. One of those three will play New England for the title. Hoping the Vikes make it a home game in February. Simmer and Keenum are great stories

  12. Huge game Thursday between the Vikings and Lions. These two teams always seem to play close games. Should be a good one. Go Lions!

  13. 6ball says:
    November 21, 2017 at 8:01 am
    .
    The Saints opened the season with two very sloppy losses to Minnesota and the Patriots. Following the home loss to New England, they’ve reeled off eight very impressive wins. One could wonder if Belichick and close friend, Sean Peyton had a candid conversation about the Saints strengths and weaknesses following their loss to the Patriots.

    ————————————————————————————

    Saints have thrived on playing garbage QB’s the entire year losing two games to REAL QB’s and nearly losing to Cousins.

    Credit to the Saints doing what a good team should do to garbage teams, but lets see what they do down the final stretch.

  14. Seahawks were built on youthful exuberance but are only ever looking older and older. And only increasing the pressure on Wilson to do it all himself – playing Russian Roulette for a major injury and then the Hawks will look like the Aaron-less Packers on a very bad day.

  15. funshipm174 says:
    November 21, 2017 at 8:35 am
    The Eagles be in the class of the NFC is subjective, many thought the Rams were also until they’ve actually faced a real team.
    ——————————————-
    True…their only loss was to the Chiefs who are looking worse and worse all the time.

  16. Falcons are their own worst enemy. Super bowl hangover.. what ever you want to call it, they need to continue get things right.

    Falcons offense, special teams and stupid defensive penalties seem to be hold them back from a much better record.

    5-1 in the NFC. If this team gets on a hot streak like last year and the fact that the Falcons defense is much improved, I don’t care who they play in the NFC they can and will beat them.

    BRING IT!

  17. In response to the “if the Patriots played anybody good…”

    My counter argument is, and a real concern for the next slog of no-names, is that a team can fall prey to “playing down” to the level of the team they play… and, conversely, an excellent team like the Patriots “play up to” good teams, making them stronger, better prepared.

    When I played with superior players as a kid, I learned from them…. and got much better. If I played with those who couldn’t do as well as me… I may have won, but I didn’t advance my skill level.

    I think if NE played a tougher set of teams, they’d only improve.

  18. If Patriots played in NFC they would never be a “dynasty” if they plated in NFC this season they would be about 5-5….They are not very good..They beat a Raiders team that hates their coa ch because of who he voted for so they are purposely losing games
    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Cool assessment. Now, let’s look at the actual facts. The Patriots own a nearly .800 winning percentage vs. the NFC since realignment in 2002. This is the best inter-conference record in the NFL during that timeframe. They are also 3-1 vs. the NFC this year, with 2 of the 3 teams they beat currently being playoff teams. They lost to their only other NFC opponent by a last minute field goal. Any other insights?

  19. Fun fact: Only one team that the Eagles have beaten currently has a winning record.
    Another fun fact: The Cowboys won 11 in a row last year, finished 13-3, and lost in the first round of the playoffs.

    Calm down, Eagles fans.

  20. The Patriots always have a difficult strength of schedule because they typically did well the year before. The league weights it against them every year, yet they accept the challenge rather than whine about it like others. No road losses in 2 years says it all.

  21. Even if the Vikings only win 2 of their next 3, they will be the team that nobody wants to face. They methodically control the game and frustrate their opponents into playing out of character, then they do just enough to win. It’s not pretty, but it’s masterfully effective.

  22. blessedunliketherest says:
    November 21, 2017 at 9:22 am
    If Patriots played in NFC they would never be a “dynasty” if they plated in NFC this season they would be about 5-5….They are not very good..They beat a Raiders team that hates their coa ch because of who he voted for so they are purposely losing games
    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Cool assessment. Now, let’s look at the actual facts. The Patriots own a nearly .800 winning percentage vs. the NFC since realignment in 2002. This is the best inter-conference record in the NFL during that timeframe. They are also 3-1 vs. the NFC this year, with 2 of the 3 teams they beat currently being playoff teams. They lost to their only other NFC opponent by a last minute field goal. Any other insights?

    Additionally, NE was hosed by consecutive sketchy calls that moved Carolina into FG range. I especially loved the call where a Carolina RB ran into Chung’s knees and Chung was called for holding.

    But it only sweetens the deal if people want to kid themselves into thinking NE has no chance against the NFC which has lost the last 3 SB’s.

  23. As bad as i hate to say it, everything seems to be lining up for the Patriots…again. They’ll most likely have home field, and even if they have to go to Pittsburgh, that won’t scare them because they practically own the Steelers. How many teams could really make a Super Bowl run this year? The league is painfully mediocre this year and the Patriots are simply the best at being mediocre. The days of building REAL dynasties on the backs of multiple HOF players are long gone.

  24. Cowboys always say, its because of injuries…… they always have an elite starting team, but the drop off from starters to back-ups is the worst in the league. Saints lost starting CB, LT and WLB and we got better.

  25. That other team that lost it’s all pro left tackle, starting middle linebacker and key running back are puttin on a clinic of how that next man up thing works.
    Next up..Da Bears..
    Go Eagles!

  26. thejimmyshoes says:
    November 21, 2017 at 9:46 am
    As bad as i hate to say it, everything seems to be lining up for the Patriots…again. They’ll most likely have home field, and even if they have to go to Pittsburgh, that won’t scare them because they practically own the Steelers. How many teams could really make a Super Bowl run this year? The league is painfully mediocre this year and the Patriots are simply the best at being mediocre. The days of building REAL dynasties on the backs of multiple HOF players are long gone.

    That’s true about the dynasty building, which makes NE’s run so much more amazing considering the state of free agency these days.

  27. In response to people saying if Sean Lee were playing cowboys team would be better off. Now I don’t disagree but injuries are not an excuse, blame the coaches and The personnel people for not drafting and developing talent behind their stars. Eagles lost their starting tackle and best linebacker who also is vastly underrated. But they are 9-1 because of the talent behind those players

  28. It is too early to count anyone in or out. if the Sea dogs lose to the 49ers next week, then you can count them out perhaps. LOL.

    It is too early to name Seattle GM John the turkey Schneider as the executive of the year for signing free agent Blair Walsh and letting Steven Hauschka walk? After all it is close to Thanksgiving. ROTFL

  29. “Rdog says:

    November 21, 2017 at 9:28 am

    Fun fact: Only one team that the Eagles have beaten currently has a winning record.

    Another fun fact: The Cowboys won 11 in a row last year, finished 13-3, and lost in the first round of the playoffs.

    Calm down, Eagles fans.”

    ****************************

    I think I’ll enjoy it while it lasts and be as excited as I want to be but thanks for your lecture.

  30. Pointless! Look at the games that need to be played just in the NFC South.

    Panthers – Saints, Falcons & Vikings
    Saints – Rams & Falcons 2x
    Falcons – Saints 2x, Panthers & Vikings

    Newsflash: Season doesn’t end today or a week from today…it ends after the last whistle on 12/31.

  31. golferinminny says:
    November 21, 2017 at 9:44 am
    Even if the Vikings only win 2 of their next 3, they will be the team that nobody wants to face. They methodically control the game and frustrate their opponents into playing out of character, then they do just enough to win. It’s not pretty, but it’s masterfully effective.

    **********
    No, Zimmer just blitzes 75% of the time. They will get exposed on Thursday. Greg Robinson is no longer on the team so Everson Griffen is actually going to have to play against a pretty good left tackle.

  32. I see the iggles going 51~ 1 then winning the divisional playoff game in a blowout then losing on an overtime 53 yard fieldgoal at the hands of the Vikings but hey,,, all and all a great season put my Giants to shame !

  33. “If Patriots played in NFC they would never be a “dynasty””

    The Pats have virtually the same winning % against the NFC as the do against the AFC. Don’t let the facts get in your way though of crying about the mean ol’ Patriots. The Pats are better than your team.

  34. Somewhere, my Tony Romo is smiling, if not outright laughing, because he knows he won’t get BASHED, for the shape of the Cowboys:) Dak threw 3 interceptions and lost a fumble, but it is because we don’t have Smith??????? AND, the coaching is horrible ??? ..lol..These are the same coaches we have had for years, and Garrett needs to go!!! He has had 7 years, can’t manage the clock, can’t make in-game adjustments, and frankly can’t coach himself out of a wet paper bag. Linehan is close behind!! Don’t blame Jerry Jones for this debacle (except for keeping JG)!! McClay, Stephen & JG, took over the draft years ago, and we have nobody efficient enough to cover for Smith, our Pro Bowler…smh…Yet Romo would be unmercilessly bashed if he was still the q/b, all over the internet!!!! He is smiling 🙂

  35. The Rams drove 75 yards and a TD on their opening drive against the Vikings. And then, 125 total yards and zero points the rest of the game (until garbage yards the last 3 minutes). And the Vikings missed two field goals in an easy 24-7 win. Right now, the Vikings are playing as good or better than anybody.

  36. Aaron Rodgers could be back as soon as week 15. Until then, GB has a tough game against the Steelers and 2 easier games against the Buccaneers and Browns. I think the Packers have a reasonable chance to be at least 7-6 when Rodgers comes back.

  37. If the Cowboys beat the Chargers they’ll go 10-6, which will be just enough to get in. They’ll win that season finale against Philly because the Eagles will be resting starters. I think they get upset by either the Skins or Giants. If they can keep pace until Lee and Elliott get back, Dallas will make a run. Also Dak isn’t very good. Really wish everyone would stop creaming their jeans for this guy. He’s not special.

  38. thefappingbearcutler says:
    November 21, 2017 at 11:12 am
    golferinminny says:
    November 21, 2017 at 9:44 am
    Even if the Vikings only win 2 of their next 3, they will be the team that nobody wants to face. They methodically control the game and frustrate their opponents into playing out of character, then they do just enough to win. It’s not pretty, but it’s masterfully effective.

    **********
    No, Zimmer just blitzes 75% of the time. They will get exposed on Thursday. Greg Robinson is no longer on the team so Everson Griffen is actually going to have to play against a pretty good left tackle.
    _______

    You made up that statistic. I saw the top 5 teams in terms of blitz percentage and the Vikings weren’t one of them. The fifth-ranked team blitzed 38% of the time. The Vikings make it look like they’re going to blitz a lot, but they often don’t follow through. I guess that’s hard for you to understand.

  39. they’re going to get exposed in London
    they’re going to get exposed in Washington
    they’re going to get exposed by Los Angeles
    they’re going to get exposed on Thursday

    Anybody else see a pattern?

    We dont turn the ball over and we can win on Thursday. Should be a great game between the best teams in the NFC North.

  40. Dear Seahawk Fans,

    I sure hope you are enjoying Blair Walsh in a Seahawks uniform, I know I am!

    Best of luck as the kicks get more important, I’m SURE he will rise to the occasion.

    A happy vikings fan!

  41. usdcoyotesfan says:
    November 21, 2017 at 12:26 pm
    Aaron Rodgers could be back as soon as week 15. Until then, GB has a tough game against the Steelers and 2 easier games against the Buccaneers and Browns. I think the Packers have a reasonable chance to be at least 7-6 when Rodgers comes back.

    ———————————————————————————————
    I’m not sure a team that just got shut out at home, to an average team can call any game easy. I guarantee you the Browns and Bucs are both looking at the Pack game as a winnable one in a season neither team has won much.

  42. usdcoyotesfan says:

    November 21, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    Aaron Rodgers could be back as soon as week 15. Until then, GB has a tough game against the Steelers and 2 easier games against the Buccaneers and Browns. I think the Packers have a reasonable chance to be at least 7-6 when Rodgers comes back.
    ==================================

    I’d love to say someone is off his meds, but believe it or not, this isn’t the most inane thing this guy has posted on here.

  43. GB has as much chance of making the playoffs, as I have the chance of going back thirty years and losing those 40 pounds. IT AIN’T HAPPENING!

  44. While I would love for the Pack to be eliminated from playoff contention with the Browns first win of the season, I’m not counting them out just yet. They managed a win against the Bears and I don’t see the Bucs or Browns as better than the Bears so they very well could be 7-6, but I also don’t think Rodgers comes back in week 15, that’s just not enough recovery time and if he does it would be against the Panthers Defense who would be licking their chops to put Rodgers down for the count. Thus I think they will likely be 7-7 at BEST when Rodgers is able to come back, but 9-7 won’t be good enough to get into the playoffs this year so he will opt to sit out the season and the Packers finish the season 7-9 or 8-8. Just low enough in the draft to not get a top QB to replace the disaster that is hundley.

  45. 6ball says:
    November 21, 2017 at 8:01 am
    .
    The Saints opened the season with two very sloppy losses to Minnesota and the Patriots. Following the home loss to New England, they’ve reeled off eight very impressive wins. One could wonder if Belichick and close friend, Sean Peyton had a candid conversation about the Saints strengths and weaknesses following their loss to the Patriots

    ////////////

    “Eight very impressive wins” which includes the Dolphins, Rodger less Packers, Da Bears, Bucs, Bills and Redskins. Pretty impressive.

  46. coltluger says:
    November 21, 2017 at 2:59 pm
    As long as the sea chickens and packers are out, it’s a good season. Two most insufferable fan bases in sports.

    /////////////

    You can include the detroit kitties there also.

  47. 1 16 Rate This
    medialovesthecowboys says:
    November 21, 2017 at 12:32 pm
    If the Cowboys beat the Chargers they’ll go 10-6, which will be just enough to get in. They’ll win that season finale against Philly because the Eagles will be resting starters. I think they get upset by either the Skins or Giants. If they can keep pace until Lee and Elliott get back, Dallas will make a run. Also Dak isn’t very good. Really wish everyone would stop creaming their jeans for this guy. He’s not special.

    ///////////////////

    So what you’re saying is the only way the cowboys beat the Eagles is if they rest their starters. You sure have a lot of confidence in your boys.

  48. Been a Vikes fan since the 70’s and this has the feel of the “Purple People Eaters” era!Back then the Pack was terrible because they just had terrible players instead of missing their only good player in this era. Protect the ball, continue to play “Purple people Eaters” type D and we win! SKOL!!

  49. 6ball says:
    November 21, 2017 at 8:01 am

    .
    The Saints opened the season with two very sloppy losses to Minnesota and the Patriots. Following the home loss to New England, they’ve reeled off eight very impressive wins.
    ))))))))))))))))))
    Not true at all. Here are their wins.Panthers & Lions and if you want throw in the foreskins are good wins. Other than that they beat the Bucs,Bills,Dolphins, the Bears(20-12 & they needed help from the refs.) and the Rodgers less pack.So while 8 wins in a row sounds impressive. The teams they beat not impressive at all. The Saints weren’t sloppy, they weren’t having turnover and penalties associated with sloppiness. They were dominated in the first two games – Big difference. In the Vikings game they scored a TD in the last minutes to close the gap to 10. They weren’t in that game.

  50. As any city that has hosted a SB has learned, the team of the host city has NEVER been in the SB that year. Saints were a powerhouse team very capable of changing thet trend when ” bountygate” conviently occured. Sorry Vikings, but the NFL will make sure your team is not in their home stadium for a SB. Its not good for business. Mark my words.

  51. “Eight very impressive wins” which includes the Dolphins, Rodger less Packers, Da Bears, Bucs, Bills and Redskins. Pretty impressive.
    ==========================================
    5 fumbles, 12 men in the huddle and a horrible Brett Farve INT helped the Saints win a Super Bowl.
    #skolsemptytrophycase

  52. medialovesthecowboys says:
    November 21, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    If the Cowboys beat the Chargers they’ll go 10-6, which will be just enough to get in. They’ll win that season finale against Philly because the Eagles will be resting starters.
    ———————————————————————————————————————————
    They’ve been blown out 2 weeks in a row and look more like 5-11 at this point. And who knows what the Eagles plans would be in week 17 – they might need the game to edge out the Saints or Vikings for home field, or they may play starters to stay sharp, or they might destroy Dallas with their back ups playing.

  53. Redskins would be 6-4, cowboys 6-4, chargers 5-5, panthers 8-2 if the eagles didnt beat them. Who have the vikings, rams, saints, patriots, steelers played?

  54. I love listening to people whose team is not doing well and blaming it on injuries. Yes injuries do hurt a team. However, Philadelphia is 9-1. All-Pro LT Jason Peters out for season, star RB / PR Sproles – out for season, top LB’s – out for season, Darby our top DB was out for 8 weeks. So if your team takes a massive slide due to an injury then coaches need looked at. All positions should have a serviceable back-up and coaching and schemes can help as well.

    Dallas is barely doing anything to mask their injuries.

  55. Mathew Keen says:
    November 22, 2017 at 9:03 am

    Redskins would be 6-4, cowboys 6-4, chargers 5-5, panthers 8-2 if the eagles didnt beat them. Who have the vikings, rams, saints, patriots, steelers played?
    ))))))))))))))))))))
    The Vikings just beat the Rams who were the number 1 ranked offensive team in the NFL And the Number 1 ranked defense.They are a good team and I would be surprised if the Saints beat them. I hope their cb returns. Or that will be the reason.

  56. usdcoyotesfan says:
    November 21, 2017 at 12:26 pm
    Aaron Rodgers could be back as soon as week 15. Until then, GB has a tough game against the Steelers and 2 easier games against the Buccaneers and Browns. I think the Packers have a reasonable chance to be at least 7-6 when Rodgers comes back.
    ——————–
    And Rodgers would still have to play the Panthers and Vikings. Get off your delusional cloud. It’s over, Lennie.

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