NFC playoff picture: The 49ers get back on top

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There was no change to the six teams in playoff position in the NFC during Week 14, but there was a change to the way they stack up.

The 49ers are back in the top seed by virtue of beating the Saints while the Seahawks stumbled to a loss in Los Angeles. The Packers beat Washington, which bumped them past the Saints into the No. 2 spot as well.

Week 15 brings two games between NFC teams still in the playoff hunt. One sees the Rams visit Dallas to face the Cowboys in a game that both teams could really use with the regular season close to the end. The other has the Bears trying to muddle up the NFC North race against the Packers.

Here’s a look at the overall playoff picture in the NFC:

LEADERS
1. 49ers (11-2) They went 2-1 over a tough patch of the schedule and can clinch a playoff berth in Week 15, but the division may hang in the balance through Week 17’s game against the Seahawks.

2. Packers (10-3) Their win over Washington wasn’t pretty, but style points won’t help them get a first-round bye.

3. Saints (10-3) With the NFC South wrapped up, seeding is their top priority and the wild loss to the 49ers was a hit on that front.

4. Cowboys (6-7) They keep losing, but remain on top of the NFC East for at least one more week.

5. Seahawks (10-3) Winning out would get them the NFC West title and the quest starts in Carolina this Sunday.

6. Vikings (9-4) Their odds of moving up from the No. 6 slot aren’t great, so the Vikings can concentrate on nailing that down.

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN
7. Rams (8-5) They’ve looked a lot better the last two weeks, but did the switch flip too late?

8. Bears (7-6) If the Bears don’t beat the Packers, there won’t be any more playoff hope in Chicago.

9. Eagles (6-7) The Eagles showed resilience against the Giants on Monday night and will try to patch together a roster to keep it rolling against Washington.

ELIMINATED
10. Buccaneers (6-7) Sunday’s win was their third in a row, so the Bucs are at least going down swinging.

11. Panthers (5-8) Firing Ron Rivera didn’t halt their losing streak.

12. Falcons (4-9) They’ll have plenty of NFC teams rooting for them in Santa Clara this weekend.

13. Lions (3-9-1) Matt Patricia says the Lions are better than their record, which is likely to be an unpopular opinion.

14. Cardinals (3-9-1) A six-game losing streak has soured most of the early good feelings about the Cardinals.

15. Washington (3-10) Ten losses is too many to win even the 2019 NFC East.

16. Giants (2-11) Eli Manning‘s return sparked the Giants for 30 minutes, but they lost for the ninth straight time all the same.

54 responses to “NFC playoff picture: The 49ers get back on top

  1. The Eagles, with only 1 wide receiver left, (who was actually on the practice squad 3 weeks ago) are going to win the NFC East.

  2. If the Packers and the Bears each play like they’ve played these last two weeks, the Packers are in trouble. That said, if the Packers manage to put together a complete game and beat the Bears, it could (should) be a huge boost in momentum and/or morale as they face another stiff test the following week.

  3. The Vikings need to win out because the Rams are coming. They could easily blow it for even the 6th seed

  4. Solid lock on No. 6 while the Packers unexpectedly own the NFCN. It hurts. Guarantees aren’t supposed to work like that!

  5. Matt Patricia asking us to “believe in the invisible”. Channeling his inner Rod Marinelli. What is visible, is that the Lions team is much worse than they ever were during the Caldwell era. Bob Quinn shares equal blame.

    As an aside, word on the street is bob Quinn is in love with the top TE prospect, and if he somehow slides out of the top 2 picks, Quinn is sure to scoop him up at 3 or 4 overall. He’s been watching a lot of film and is convinced.

  6. It hasn’t necessarily been pretty all season long for GB, a team who’s seen their share of ups and downs.
    But, as I’ve said for weeks, this team has exceeded all my expectations for Matt LaFleurs’ inaugural season as head coach, and I couldn’t be more thrilled for what lies ahead.
    Everything from here on out is simply icing on the cake.
    What a great stepping stone for Matt and his young team moving forward.

    Now comes one of my two favorite weeks of the regular season as a Packers fan: Bear Week.
    As with most of these games, records and past accomplishments can be thrown out the window, and I expect the usual smash mouth, bare knuckles brawl this rivalry has come to be known for.

    I have several friends, who through unfortunate circumstances, have lost their way through life and have become Bear fans.
    So it will be an interesting week of chatter, with a little back and forth smack talk, especially now that Chicago has found some solid footing.
    Can’t Wait!

    Hopefully, the Packers can find another way to persevere and keep the momentum of this fantastic season going.
    A division title and first round bye would be an amazing way to cap off what has already been an amazing season.
    With every pertinent team jockeying for playoff position and some good matchups ahead, this should be an entertaining final three weeks.
    Good luck, to all the teams left in this race.
    Well, most of you anyway.

  7. Both Bears and Vikings have good odds to beat the Packers. Packers still settle in for a wild card game.

  8. Another amazing finish down the stretch in the NFC in the works. What was once a boring conference while all the interesting scenarios were in the AFC has been incredibly fun to watch the last few years for playoff positioning. 10-6 might not be good enough for the wild card this year. Crazy. The winner of the NFC gets to take on Baltimore or Kansas City in would should be a great championship game. Hopefully nothing this year is tainted by officiating.

  9. Packers for sure aren’t looking like the #2 seed in the NFC. In fact, the Saints, Seahawks, and Vikings all look better than them right now. While LaFleur’s first season has to be considered a success, he had better figure out a way to get his team firing on all cylinders if they are going to do anything other than one and done again this year.

    That being said, the Packers still control their own destiny, so the ball is in their court. The next two weeks will be very telling whether this is really a serious Super Bowl contender, or if they need another season or two to put the pieces together.

  10. 13. Lions (3-9-1) Matt Patricia says the Lions are better than their record, which is likely to be an unpopular opinion.

    No he’s right. Until Sunday, they had led in every game they had been in and had had 8 fourth quarter leads. They could be 8-4-1 right now if they had luck on their side. That team is cursed.

  11. Green Bay is the biggest “Wild Card” of the group in my opinion. I won’t be shocked to see them lose to Bears and the Vikings and then be leapfrogged by the Rams for the #6 Seed. I also won’t be surprised to see the Packers end the Season 13-3, land the #1 seed and watch Rodgers return to form and dominate the Postseason all the way to the Super Bowl. I said it to my Packer-fan buddies before week 1 and it remains true today: I have no idea how good the Packers are.

  12. For the Vikes to make the play-offs its, simple, win out. That’s all they have to do. Lets not worry about who has to beat who or root for the Bears to beat the packers. Vikes take care of there our bidness, they make the tournament. Good thing Vikes are 6-0 at home. If they can leave Golden State with a win. Eureka! The rest will fall into place at home in the Bank. Getting Thielen back will be a huge plus and make excellent offense more potent!

    Its gonna be a fun three weeks of football – I feel if the Vikings can get in the tournament, they definitely do some damage.

  13. What a field.

    I’m still betting on the Rams to overtake the Vikings for that last spot. The Vikings will probably be favored in every game this year, but will probably lose all three of them.

    The Chargers look good, the Packers are on Monday night, and the Bears will be playing for pride and another season sweep.

  14. Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.

  15. samapoc says:
    December 10, 2019 at 8:13 am
    49ers only won due to bad calls or no calls, but will the NFL even allow the Saints to win?

    —————

    Saints fans have turned out to be the biggest whiners.

  16. I have no idea how good the Packers are.
    —-
    100% agreed. And it all rests on which Aaron Rodgers shows up that day. When he’s decisive and gets the ball out quick, we are as good as anyone in the league. But far too often we get the other guy, the one who is unwilling to check down and holds the ball too long looking for a big shot or a super open (safe) throw.

  17. Both Bears and Vikings have good odds to beat the Packers.
    —–
    Disagree that the Bears have good odds. We beat them in Chicago and while they’re playing better, I think we will take it at Lambeau. The Vikings have better odds but being a Monday night game, where CK has yet to prove himself, I still wouldn’t bet on them.

  18. samapoc says:
    December 10, 2019 at 8:13 am
    49ers only won due to bad calls or no calls, but will the NFL even allow the Saints to win?
    ——
    I sure hope not.
    The Saints were gifted the SuperBowl in 2009 with all kinds of no calls for roughing.
    Sean Payton got suspended for a year for bountygate.

    So the Saints and Sean Payton deserve every thing that’s happening to them.
    Hopefully, they will choke again in new unheard of ways in the playoffs.
    They deserve it.

  19. pkrlvr says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:31 am
    I have no idea how good the Packers are.
    —-
    100% agreed. And it all rests on which Aaron Rodgers shows up that day. When he’s decisive and gets the ball out quick, we are as good as anyone in the league. But far too often we get the other guy, the one who is unwilling to check down and holds the ball too long looking for a big shot or a super open (safe) throw.
    —-
    Rodgers has been the king of extending plays and improvising. It seemed like every game there was an example of him “pulling one out of thin air” and completing a huge pass. Those passes aren’t completed as often anymore and some of those decisions are hurting the Packers offense.

  20. The Saints were gifted the SuperBowl in 2009 with all kinds of no calls for roughing.
    —–
    Lol man that was 10 years ago, but I feel your pain. Being a Packer fan I was loathe to support the Vikings but have to admit I watched that game on the edge of my seat and was crushed when Favre threw that last int. Really wanted him to ride off into the sunset with a SB win, even if it was with the Vikings.

  21. Alan Light says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:25 am
    Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.
    ——————————
    cheeseisfattening says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:30 am
    Ugh. Why won’t this post?

    Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.
    ——————–
    ——————–
    So what you’re telling me is that cheeseisfattening and Alan Light are the same poster? Good to know. I can’t keep all of these Packers-obsessed viking fans with all of their multiple screen names straight anymore.

  22. Only NFL Team With 0 Playoff Wins says:

    December 10, 2019 at 9:51 am

    13. Lions (3-9-1) Matt Patricia says the Lions are better than their record, which is likely to be an unpopular opinion.

    No he’s right. Until Sunday, they had led in every game they had been in and had had 8 fourth quarter leads. They could be 8-4-1 right now if they had luck on their side. That team is cursed.

    —————————————————————————–

    No, you’re wrong and Bill Parcells is right. They are their record. They can’t hold leads, they can’t ever come up big with stops, and they can’t ever come up big to win games at the wire.

  23. Alan Light says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:25 am

    Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.

    ****************
    cheeseisfattening says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:30 am
    Ugh. Why won’t this post?

    Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.
    ________________

    Weird.

  24. tokyosandblaster says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:22 am

    What a field.

    I’m still betting on the Rams to overtake the Vikings for that last spot. The Vikings will probably be favored in every game this year, but will probably lose all three of them.

    The Chargers look good, the Packers are on Monday night, and the Bears will be playing for pride and another season sweep.

    ——————————————

    You hope the Rams do and as a Packer fan I would hope for it too.Because the last team you wanna face in the play-offs is the Minnesota Vikings with Cook to trampled those Super Bowl Dreams huh? Out of all the teams in the play-offs, the Vikings are best equipped to beat Green Bay at Lambeau.

  25. Amazing year in the NFC. Realistic scenario where any one of 3 teams can go 11-5 and not make the playoffs. If Vikes go 2-1, Pack goes 1-2 and Rams go 3-0 one of them doesn’t get in and all 3 will be at 11-5.

  26. pkrlvr says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:40 am

    Both Bears and Vikings have good odds to beat the Packers.
    —–
    Disagree that the Bears have good odds. We beat them in Chicago and while they’re playing better, I think we will take it at Lambeau. The Vikings have better odds but being a Monday night game, where CK has yet to prove himself, I still wouldn’t bet on them.

    ———————
    Agree to disagree, fine. I’ll change from using the word good,and instead say, decent odds. Bears total defense ranked 10 vs Packers rank 22 (Vikes rank 14). In fact even Packer offense isn’t ranked that much better than the Bears, 23 vs 29. I’d give a nod to Packers with a field goal but still, Bears have decent chance in Green Bay.
    MNF or not, odds makers will take the Vikings, at home, regardless of the narrative around Cousins not closing the big games. Cousins has done plenty towards holding the Vikes up well to just about anyone this year, and considering Viking offense is ranked 11 vs Packer rank 23, is support enough to put the win on the Vikes.

  27. shadysaints says:
    December 10, 2019 at 7:45 am
    Doesn’t matter, 49’ers will be one and done in the playoffs. Bet.

    —————

    these Saints fans have become the biggest whiners in the NFL. Think its time for Payton and fans to own their own demise.

  28. bordner says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:57 am
    Alan Light says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:25 am
    Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.
    ——————————
    cheeseisfattening says:
    December 10, 2019 at 10:30 am
    Ugh. Why won’t this post?

    Rooting for the Rams to win out and take the #6 wild card seed from the Packers. Green Bay not playing good enough to deserve a playoff spot.
    ——————–
    ——————–
    So what you’re telling me is that cheeseisfattening and Alan Light are the same poster? Good to know. I can’t keep all of these Packers-obsessed viking fans with all of their multiple screen names straight anymore.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I can help you with that. They’re pretty much ALL the same guy. He’s also the Viking-obsessed Packer fans, although he uses far fewer Packer fan identities than Viking fan identities. It’s a real hoot when he argues with himself, trying to draw others into the fray.

  29. I would like to add that if the saints and Seattle win the remaining games the 9ers drop back down to 5th with the saints back in 1st. These teams are to good and too close to call just yet.
    Good luck all. Should be fun to the finish

  30. The Forty-Niners and Saints look like the best teams in the NFC this now. The division leaders packers and Eagles/Cowboys look like they would be 1 and done in the playoffs. Seattle, Rams and Minnesota could shake the playoffs up with an upset.Also people posting about Rodgers great abilities are ignoring the last 3 seasons. Rodgers has looked a little better than an average QB in that time and he has blamed his head coach for this. How long before Rodgers starts blaming LaFleur publicly?

  31. @cabbage

    Be careful he will start downvoting all your posts multiple times and upvoting his posts multiple times. That is what he does when he is really rattled.😌

    I don’t read 99.9 of his drivel anymore. I just scroll past ALL the comments and just post when here. It’s a shame because this site was originally a place knowledgeable football fans could talk actual football and the discourse was great.

    #OneTeamOneNation

    #PackersNation!

  32. One thing for sure — if the Vikes make the playoffs, they will have earned it, since the last 3 weeks of the schedule isn’t gravy the way the Chargers and Bears have been playing.

    Hard to root for either the Bears or Pack this weekend, but a Packer loss and a Viking win this week would make the Monday night game even more entertaining.

  33. aaronspornstash says:
    December 10, 2019 at 11:18 am

    You hope the Rams do and as a Packer fan I would hope for it too.Because the last team you wanna face in the play-offs is the Minnesota Vikings with Cook to trampled those Super Bowl Dreams huh? Out of all the teams in the play-offs, the Vikings are best equipped to beat Green Bay at Lambeau.
    ————
    Doubtful. I would think it’s much more likely that Kirk Cousins would completely melt under the bright lights and January chill of postseason football at Lambeau.
    In fact, I’m counting on it!

  34. Rams fans need to settle down. Beating the Seahawks doesn’t suddenly make you playoff team.. and the Vikings are not going to drop 3 in a row, so stop dreaming.

  35. What about that “free” guy? Dude comes from out of nowhere this year and comments multiple times on all Vikings stories. Like he doesn’t have multiple names? Like he hasn’t been here the whole time? Like he doesn’t post the most ridiculous posts out of everybody?!

    Anyway, back to football. I wouldn’t lay a dollar of my own money on who represents the nfc in the SB this year. 49ers, Saints, Vikings, Packers, Seahawks. All could.

    But the Seahawks give up a ton of points. The Vikings defense is suspect, and the team has started several games slow. The Packers entire team can, and has, laid numerous eggs this year. And the 49ers and Saints defenses just took a huge nap.

  36. The one thing I know for sure is; Packer fans do not want to play the Vikings in the playoffs. Why? Because if the Packers go one and done to the Vikings, 99% of the Packer fans will have to eat their words (while the 1%, read: Stellar, will proclaim they are just happy to have made the playoffs).

  37. The one thing I know for sure is; Packer fans do not want to play the Vikings in the playoffs. Why? Because if the Packers go one and done to the Vikings, 99% of the Packer fans will have to eat their words (while the 1%, read: Stellar, will proclaim they are just happy to have made the playoffs).
    _______________
    I’m a Packers fan, and I say bring it on.

  38. The same can be said for Vikings fans, Conorcheesy.

    You all kind of already have to eat your words, though, because all of you were saying the Packers would be 4th in the north. As of right now, they’re 2nd in the conference.

  39. Considering nobody but Packer fans gave the Packers a chance this year, what with a new front office, new head coach, and completely new offensive scheme, it’s been a fun season so far. It’s been two steps forward, one step back, all season long. The Packers have far exceeded expectations.

    Even if they fail in the first round…….I won’t care. As a fan, the Packers have given me three lifetimes of success to enjoy. I was there through the Dark Years. Never wavered. They’ve rewarded me beyond description. If they never win anything again, it’s enough for me, and there’s always next year.

    How many fans of how many teams can say that? Very, very few.

  40. Hey jacked up bone head even if the rain town hawks are in the playoffs they are so weak hat nobody is afraid of that joke team but have fun living in a depressing rain town hahahahaha. They be one and done like last time

  41. tokyosandblaster says:
    December 10, 2019 at 3:03 pm
    The same can be said for Vikings fans, Conorcheesy.

    You all kind of already have to eat your words, though, because all of you were saying the Packers would be 4th in the north.
    ////////
    Ha ha ha. Nobody said that, except maybe 1 goofball, that was probably a Packer fan posing as a Vikings fan. You guys do that an awful lot. I said 2nd, right behind the Vikings. Bears Third. Lions fourth, of course. And since you guys have been crowing since week 1 that you’re in first, you will be much more crazy upset when the Vikings beat you in the first round (providing you don’t fold on a couple road games coming up).

  42. freefromwhatyouare says:
    December 10, 2019 at 12:27 pm
    @cabbage

    It’s a shame because this site was originally a place knowledgeable football fans could talk actual football and the discourse was great.
    //////////
    How would you even know that? This is your first season here. Wait……..you do have multiple screen names, don’t you.

    Hey, I tell you what. I am more than happy to talk X’s and O’s with you, and leave the childish insults to others (I never call Aaron, Erin. I never call your team anything other than Packers). Take a look at my above post about the weaknesses of each NFC team. Real football talk. Let’s do this. I don’t think you can do it.

  43. I wonder if Alan Light and Cheeseisfattening support each other in the mirror? Always on the same page, those 2 guys. Oh, I am sure others have been busted, but within 2 posts? Fine work there, Genius.

  44. Viking Fan Blames Officials…..Everybody Drink says:
    December 10, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    aaronspornstash says:
    December 10, 2019 at 11:18 am

    You hope the Rams do and as a Packer fan I would hope for it too.Because the last team you wanna face in the play-offs is the Minnesota Vikings with Cook to trampled those Super Bowl Dreams huh? Out of all the teams in the play-offs, the Vikings are best equipped to beat Green Bay at Lambeau.
    ————
    Doubtful. I would think it’s much more likely that Kirk Cousins would completely melt under the bright lights and January chill of postseason football at Lambeau.
    In fact, I’m counting on it!
    ———————————————

    They said the same thing about Dante Culpepper back in 04, or do you forgot the debacle? 4th 26? Onside Kick? Those who pontificate for profit and the talking heads are basing future performances on what Rodgers has done in the past. Its 2019 kiddo!If your sqaud doesn’t look any better than they did against Washington, doesn’t matter the seed, you’ll be one and done. Packers may have the better QB (based on (past performance) but the Vikings have a better overall line up. FACT!

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