Week 15 NFL playoff picture: Packers move back on top in NFC

Chicago Bears v Green Bay Packers
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The NFC playoffs went through Green Bay last season and we may be on our way to a repeat this season.

Monday night’s 30-23 Rams win over the Cardinals dropped Arizona out of the No. 1 seed in the NFC and the Packers, who beat the Cardinals in Week Eight, moved into their place. The Cardinals also dropped behind Buccaneers and the Rams are now just a game back, so their playoff outlook looks very different as they turn their attention toward Week 15.

No teams dropped out of playoff position this week, but Washington did slip to the No. 7 seed after losing to the Cowboys. That won’t be the case if they lose again in Philadelphia this week.

Here’s how the entire playoff picture looks with Week 14 in the books:

1. Packers (10-3) Aaron Rodgers‘ toe took a turn for the worse on Sunday night, but the wins keep on coming for the Packers.

2. Buccaneers (10-3) The Saints have been their kryptonite in the regular season the last two years and they’ll try to change that trend this week.

3. Cardinals (10-3) Monday’s loss dropped them to 3-3 at home, but they remain perfect on the road and a trip to Detroit offers a good chance to keep that rolling.

4. Cowboys (9-4) The offense is still trying to find the right formula and their defense has given them the opportunity to do that with the division comfortably in their pocket.

5. Rams (9-4) November was a rough month for the Rams, but things are looking up again in Los Angeles.

6. 49ers (7-6) They recovered after blowing a 14-point lead in Cincinnati and will try to knock the Falcons out of the Wild Card race this weekend.

7. Washington (6-7) Their winning streak ended at home against the Cowboys and their playoff hopes will look pretty dim if the Eagles beat them this weekend.

8. Vikings (6-7) Holding on against the Steelers last Thursday keeps hope alive heading into this week’s trip to Chicago.

9. Eagles (6-7) A bye week allowed them to rest up for a four-game stretch of divisional games that will decide their playoff fate.

10. Falcons (6-7) Being outscored by 108 points usually isn’t a formula for making the playoffs, but the Falcons are still breathing after beating the Panthers.

11. Saints (6-7) Ending their five-game losing streak leaves the lights on for the Saints and finding a way to win in Tampa would give them a lot of momentum heading into the final three weeks.

12. Panthers (5-8) The Panthers’ 3-0 start feels like it came in a completely different season.

13. Seahawks (5-8) Two straight wins have made things less bleak in Seattle, but a loss in Los Angeles this week will turn attention back to what will happen in the offseason.

14. Giants (4-9) The best news for the Giants right now is that they also have the Bears’ first-round pick in 2022.

15. Bears (4-9) With two games against the Vikings in the next four weeks, the Bears can play spoiler for their divisional rivals.

ELIMINATED

16. Lions (1-11-1) The Lions were shorthanded in Week 14 and that’s a bad spot to be in when you’re not all that good at full strength.

37 responses to “Week 15 NFL playoff picture: Packers move back on top in NFC

  1. I refuse to take the Packers seriously while Kevin King and Mason Crosby remain on the roster.

  2. The problem with that Bears draft pick is that as of now Dave Gettleman will certainly mess it up. Things are looking bleak. Thanks for the rings, Eli. I doubt we’ll make a run at the big show in the near future.

  3. The Packers have the offense and the defense to go all the way. If they go down in the playoffs it’ll be because of their atrocious special teams.

  4. I refuse to take the Bears, Vikings, and Lions seriously until the Packers are no longer a team in the NFL.

  5. I refuse to take the Packers seriously while Kevin King and Mason Crosby remain on the roster.

    ++++

    I used to think the same thing about Will Redmond (who was released 3 weeks ago).

    King grades out decently at PFF. Crosby I just hold my nose and my breath.

  6. The Packers are the most solid team in the NFL right now but enter the playoffs and Rodgers, not the special teams, will be their downfall

  7. jpdsurf says:
    December 14, 2021 at 9:33 am
    Arizona was never truly the number 1 seed and last night proved it.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    The same can be said of every team that has held the #1 seed during the season eg. most recently the Packers losing to the Vikings. Even in the playoffs, being the #1 seed doesn’t guarantee winning the Super Bowl.

  8. The Patriots’ defense would eat Rogers alive
    ==========

    Yeah, I have no doubt Belichick would come up with a great gameplan.

    Will they stop the run? LaFleur is from the Shanahan school. He’s perfectly content to hand it off. Jones can burn you, Dillon can flat out punish you.

    The Pats are 19th in rush yards allowed….

  9. The first round bye has become more important because it’s the only one. The Packers need another off-week for healing and it would come at a perfect time. They need to take care of business the rest of the way, even if it has to be done at the expense of having the liar Rodgers on the roster. .

  10. nhpats2011 says:
    December 14, 2021 at 10:19 am
    The Patriots’ defense would eat Rogers alive.
    ———————————————————————-
    It would be fun to find out. Of course that would mean both made it to the big game.

  11. I’m sorry, but the feel good story of Arizona needs to end. Doesn’t matter if they have home field or not! They are not going to get by Tampa or Green Bay in the playoffs! Definitely not scary at all!

  12. Missin’ Again Crosby says:
    December 14, 2021 at 10:46 am
    The Patriots’ defense would eat Rogers alive
    ==========

    Yeah, I have no doubt Belichick would come up with a great gameplan.

    Will they stop the run? LaFleur is from the Shanahan school. He’s perfectly content to hand it off. Jones can burn you, Dillon can flat out punish you.

    The Pats are 19th in rush yards allowed….

    ———-

    No way Aaron can handle handing it off all game…. Especially if he is in the big stage. His ego won’t allow it

  13. Well, if Belichick did blow the Packers out, it would be a first for him.

    Every single one of this Super Bowl wins (and losses, in fairness) could have gone the other way.

  14. Weird.
    After the Vikings unceremoniously knocked off the Packers several weeks ago, that Cheesy Fat Guy promised to everyone within screenshot that Minnesota would be playing for the NFC North lead this week.
    Yet, as I check the standings, it would appear they’re still about 4 games back.
    Hmm….🤔

  15. I don’t know how anyone can watch the same movie and think the outcome will be any different season after season. The Packers will get bounced again in the postseason. They have not played either the Bucs or the Patriots.

  16. nhpats2011 says: December 14, 2021 at 11:56 am No way Aaron can handle handing it off all game…. Especially if he is in the big stage. His ego won’t allow it Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz You’ve provided two different answers to two different contentions. I’ll bet you find it annoying when facts get in the way of your opinions.

  17. The Vikes will for sure make the playoffs with two games against a weak Chicago, a Rams game at home, the final in GB may not even matter, they could be in by then.
    The pack d looked shaky and the special teams dont really exist on this team so they have a tough road to hoe going ahead. I have them losing in round one and done

  18. Tom Brady and the Bucs were lucky as hell to beat the Packers last year, and they know it. There’s one team the Packer’s want to play again, and it’s the Buc’s. There is one team the Buc’s want to avoid at all costs, and that’s the Packers.

  19. The Packer D almost coughed up this game – forget the score there were two plays for TD’s called back on Chicago or this would have been a nail biter. Fact is, this was a 4-8 team with an injured rookie QB and the two best defensive players and receiver missing and they took it to the pack at home.
    The Pack D is not that good. Bad things can still happen to them going forward.

  20. The Packer D almost coughed up this game – forget the score there were two plays for TD’s called back on Chicago or this would have been a nail biter. Fact is, this was a 4-8 team with an injured rookie QB and the two best defensive players and receiver missing and they took it to the pack at home.
    =========

    Fact is, the Packers D only gave up 2 touchdowns Sunday night.

    Fact is, they’re 7th in points allowed, 6th in yards allowed.

    I don’t know if they’ll hold up. Call me cautiously optimistic. But they’re not a bad defense by any stretch of the imagination.

  21. If the Packers earn a home field bye in the first round, they cannot be labeled one-and-done. They will have already advanced to round two.

  22. Can we take a moment to shout out how lucky GB has gotten through many of these games?
    -played SF while they were down (and still barely won)
    -Bengals kicker missed 18 field goals or they would have lost (so did crosby, but i digress)
    -washington didn’t score on 4 trips inside the red zone. Thats unheard of
    -beat AZ because the WR didn’t turn around/gave up on the play
    -get Russell Wilson right after his broken finger
    -got the rams in the midst of their slump
    -get the ravens this week with a broken lamar jackson

    This team is escaping by the skin of their teeth and favorable circumstances (that they seem to ALWAYS get year in and year out). Not worthy of a 1 seed

  23. ImaPayne says:
    December 14, 2021 at 1:23 pm

    The Packer D almost coughed up this game – forget the score there were two plays for TD’s called back on Chicago or this would have been a nail biter. Fact is, this was a 4-8 team with an injured rookie QB and the two best defensive players and receiver missing and they took it to the pack at home.
    The Pack D is not that good. Bad things can still happen to them going forward.
    ********
    I really don’t understand the rationale for your post.
    Please back up your assessment with something more meaningful than your whimsical, misguided take.

    I’m curious, did you actually watch the same Sunday night game as I did?
    Do you really want to talk about the Bear’s walking wounded and compare?
    because if you do, I’ve got a laundry list of significant players missing from GB’s lineup.
    Missing large portions of the season too.

    Defense almost coughed up the game?
    They only allowed a late 2nd half field goal (with just over 1:00 to play).
    In fact, the defense only really allowed 2 Tds the whole game, this, despite the special teams leaving them in unenviable situations all night long.

    Overall the Packers’ defense is ranked 6th in the NFL in yardage, 7th in points allowed, and 8th in takeaways.
    13 games in, these rankings carry weight.
    If you honestly believe that the Packers’ defense isn’t very good, than almost everyone else’s in the league must be absolute garbage.

    In truth, I’ll admit they’re not perfect by any means, but it certainly hasn’t been this team’s Achilles’ heal as in year’s past.

  24. This team is escaping by the skin of their teeth and favorable circumstances

    +++++

    Too bad the Vikings can only escape by the skin of their teeth only every third try.

  25. stellarperformance says:
    December 14, 2021 at 1:21 pm
    Tom Brady and the Bucs were lucky as hell to beat the Packers last year
    ————
    7 > 1; that’s not luck. I’m not a NE or Tampa fan but Tom is a proven winner. It may be more likely Rodgers had a lucky year than someone having 7, but math is hard for people who pay for fake stick with not dividends or intrinsic value.

  26. The Pack is 10-3 without having played a good game yet? If that’s the case, God help whoever plays them if they play a good game because if they do, there isn’t a team in the league that will come within 2 tds of them

  27. Maybe Packer vs the Patriots in the SB. Matt Patricia is back with the Pats plus BB. It will be interesting.

  28. RMoss84HOF says:
    December 14, 2021 at 3:39 pm
    7 > 1; that’s not luck.
    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    I said “last year.” They didn’t play each other eight times “last year.”

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