NFC playoff picture: Arizona remains in top spot

AP

By holding off St. Louis Thursday night, the Cardinals held on to the No. 1 seed in the NFC. They also moved onto the doorstep of a playoff berth, which could be clinched Sunday.

Here’s how the NFC’s playoff contenders stack up entering the rest of the Week 15 card. Clinching scenarios are included, and the NFL’s standings and tiebreaking rules were referenced:

THE BIG SIX

1. Arizona Cardinals (11-3, .786). NFC West leader.

Can clinch a playoff berth if:

a) Cowboys-Eagles does not end in a tie . . .

OR

b) the Lions lose to the Vikings and the Cardinals notch the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Packers . . .

OR

c) the Lions lose to the Vikings and the Packers defeat or tie the Bills.

2. Green Bay Packers (10-3, .769). NFC North leader.

Can clinch a playoff berth with a win over the Bills and a Cowboys loss to the Eagles and the Packers notching the strength of victory tiebreaker over Dallas. 

3. Philadelphia Eagles (9-4, .692). NFC East leader. 

4. Atlanta Falcons (5-8, .385). NFC South leader. NFC South’s top-seeded team on basis of head-to-head win vs. New Orleans.

5. Seattle Seahawks (9-4, .692). Wild card No. 1. Seeded ahead of Detroit on basis of better record in common games.

6. Detroit Lions (9-4, .692). Wild card No. 2. Seeded ahead of Dallas on basis of better NFC record (7-2 vs. 6-4).

JUST MISSING

7. Dallas Cowboys (9-4, .692).

8. San Francisco 49ers (7-6, .538).

OTHER NFC SOUTH CONTENDERS

11. New Orleans Saints (5-8, .385).

13. Carolina Panthers (4-8-1, .346).

16 responses to “NFC playoff picture: Arizona remains in top spot

  1. Wow, I don’t know how you’d fix it, but seeing an NFC South team in the playoffs this year just seems wrong.

  2. Preseason all of the Viking and Bears Trolls predicted eitherone of their teams winning the division and the Packers finishing last. Reality has set in and the Packers are currently in FIRST and the Vikings and Bears are fighting for dead last. Somethings never change.

  3. hey! congratulation green bay! you might get to play a team with a 3rd string QB in the playoffs again! which means you might win!

  4. I’d agree with calling Cowboys “just missing”. The 49ers are more in the “mathematically not eliminated yet, but everyone knows they’re done” category.

  5. So the vikings have been eliminated.

    That’s ok. The best part of their season is coming up; the day after the Super Bowl we will all start hearing about how the vikings will easily win the division and the Packers will be last.

    then it all comes crashing down once the season starts again.

    Silly vikings fans. Football glory is for winners.

  6. I say this as a hater of all things Cowboys: If the Cowboys lose this week and finish 11-5 but miss the playoffs in favor of, perhaps, 6-10 Carolina, that’s a g.d. disgrace.

  7. Frazier28/7 says:
    Dec 12, 2014 10:18 AM
    hey! congratulation green bay! you might get to play a team with a 3rd string QB in the playoffs again! which means you might win!
    /////////////////////////////////////

    Awesome! Anything to make it easier would be great…….because it is very difficult. I would not expect you to understand.

  8. It’s tremendously gratifying to see the Packers back in their familiar perch atop PFT’s power rankings, and once again contending for a NFL record 14th World championship. Once again the doubters have been proven to be fools.

    The Green Bay Packers.

    Better football for better people.

  9. I sure wish that some of my fellow Packer fans could hold off on the chest thumping. There’s a loooonnnng way to go and the Packers haven’t accomplished a thing.

    Don’t be the fanbase that everyone loves to hate.

  10. It just dawned on me that my Vikings 2012 playoff appearance was nothing more than a fluke. I now realize that GB threw the final game of the season to us for two reasons: 1) To prevent a strong Bears team from making the playoffs, and 2) Because GB knew Min could not beat them in a game that counted.

    Kudos to our big brothers to the east for pulling it off and a self pat on my back for figuring it out in less than 2 years!!

  11. It’s kind of nuts that 11-3 and 10-3 teams have not yet even clinched a playoff spot, let alone their own divisions.

  12. Frazier28/7 says:
    Dec 12, 2014 10:18 AM

    hey! congratulation green bay! you might get to play a team with a 3rd string QB in the playoffs again! which means you might win!

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

    I know, right?? Tom Brady is such a joke of a 3rd string quarterback.

  13. No different than 2010 when the Seahawks won the NFC West with 7-9.

    Wow, I don’t know how you’d fix it, but seeing an NFC South team in the playoffs this year just seems wrong.

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