Barring a late season collapse, the 12-1 Philadelphia Eagles will be the top seed in the NFC and have the inside track on getting to the Super Bowl.
Their rout of the Giants clinched a playoff spot and combined with Minnesota’s loss to Detroit virtually wrapped it up the top seed for them. The Vikings are now two games behind Eagles, who have the tie break.
The Cowboys barely escaped with a victory over the Texans and remained two games behind the Eagles. They lost to the Eagles in the first game, so the Eagles can afford to lose the rematch and nail down the top seed by beating the Bears, Saints and Giants in their other three games.
The Eagles also figure to win their first round playoff game after having a bye, but the key question is which team they will play in NFC title game.
Surprisingly enough, the team that could be an obstacle is San Francisco, which now has a two game, lead over the Seahawks in the NFC West with a 9-4 record. It is still difficult to imagine rookie Brock Purdy taking them to the Super Bowl, but he has played well in last two games since Jimmy Garoppolo got hurt.
The one quarterback we know won’t be going to the Super Bowl is Tom Brady. The Bucs were no match for the 49ers and while they still lead the NFC South, they have a 6-7 record. They could still win the division and hos ta wild card game but they have the look of a one and done team even if they make it.
The Commanders and Giants, who play Sunday night, are tied for final two wild card spots at 7-5-1. The Seahawks at 7-6 and the Lions at 6-7 could still grab wild card spots. Two other teams at 5-8 – Packers and Panthers — are longshots for a wild card spot. But 5-8 Atlanta is only a game behind 6-7 Tampa Bay and could still win the NFC South.
In the AFC, the three teams with the best shot at the top seed – Buffalo, currently No. 1, Kansas City and Cincinnati all won. The Bills and Chiefs are 10-3 and the Bengals are 9-4.
Kansas City is favored to get the top spot since they finish with Houston, Seattle, Denver and Los Vegas. The Bills must play both Miami and Cincinnati and have lost Von Miller for the season. The Bengals finish with Buffalo and Baltimore. Baltimore is 9-4 and should win the next three against the Browns, Falcons and Steelers, but have that tough finale against the Bengals taht could decide the division title..
Baltimore and Tennessee may win their division titles, but aren’t playing like Super Bowl contenders. The Bengals, Miami and Patriots currently have the three wild card spots. The Patriots are tied with the Chargers and Jets at 7-6 but have the tie break over both teams.
Only three teams — the Texans, Bears and Broncos — have been officially eliminated from the playoff chase.