NFC Playoff Picture into Week 17

New Orleans Saints Wide Receiver Michael Thomas (13) congratulating Running Back Alvin Kamara (41) after Kamara ran for a first down (Photo by David Grunfeld, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune)

Now for the NFC! Everyone but the Eagles and Cowboys has clinched a spot in the playoffs this January, but the seeding can change dramatically with the games this weekend. Make sure to check out the AFC playoff picture afterwards!

NFC

#1: San Francisco 49ers (12-3)

#2: Green Bay Packers (12-3)

#3: New Orleans Saints (12-3)

#4: Philadelphia Eagles (8-7)

#5: Seattle Seahawks (11-4)

#6: Minnesota Vikings (10-5)

In the Hunt, but they don’t deserve to be:

Dallas Cowboys (7-8)

NFC EAST and BATTLE FOR THE #4:

We’ll start with the easiest. The Eagles beat the Cowboys in a close game last Sunday, which put the Eagles ahead in the division with a one game lead. All that lays between the Eagles and the playoffs is the Giants. All the Eagles need to do is win, but if they lose, the Cowboys can take the division and the number 4 seed with a win against the Redskins. The Cowboys can definitely beat Washington, but I don’t see Philadelphia losing that game.

Green Bay Packers Running Back Jamaal Williams (30) celebrating after catching a touchdown against the Minnesota Vikings with Receiver Davante Adams (17) in the background (USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin-USA TODAY NETWORK via Imagn Content Services, LLC)

1-3 SEEDS:

The Packers and Saints have clinched the division, but the 49ers are still in limbo of dropping 4 spots. Sunday Night could have the game of the year with the Seahawks and Niners playing for the division. Whoever wins that game wins the division, and are guaranteed to be a team in the top three of the NFC. 

The games this weekend are as follows:

Packers at Lions

Saints at Panthers

49ers at Seahawks

A number of situations can happen. San Francisco, Green Bay, New Orleans, and Seattle can get a first-round bye, depending on what happens during the games on Sunday. Because there are so many possibilities, I will just provide my predictions as to what is going to happen. 

My Predictions:

#1: Green Bay Packers (13-3)

#2: New Orleans Saints (12-4)

#3: Seattle Seahawks (12-4)

#4: Philadelphia Eagles (9-7)

#5: San Francisco 49ers (12-4)

#6: Minnesota Vikings (11-5)

Reasoning: 

I made it like this just to make it more interesting. Will the Saints actually lose? It’s possible, but likely not. But, with the Saints losing to the Panthers and the Seahawks beating the 49ers, the Packers will take home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. I have the Seahawks over the Niners just because the game will be in Seattle, which is, arguably, the hardest environment to play in. This will put the Seahawks at the three and the Saints at the two, because the Saints have the tiebreak over the Seahawks. I have the Eagles over the Giants as well, because it makes sense, but I could also see Philly choking. The Niners will drop down to the five seed because with their loss, the Seahawks take the NFC West. The Vikings are stuck at the six seed no matter what happens, so they will stay there.