There’s one week left in the season, one week for Sam Bradford and Vikings, along with a little help from some friends, to get the Eagles a top 10 draft pick.
Entering last week, the Eagles held, via the Vikings, the 15th overall draft pick. A week later, they still hold the 15th overall draft pick as a lot of breaks didn’t go the Eagles way. Could that change this week?
The best the Eagles/Vikings can do is slide up to 9th overall pick. For that to happen they need a certain set of dominoes to fall. A pick around 15th overall is most likely, as the Eagles need the Vikings to be upset and need some other upsets to happen.
Bears at Vikings
First order of business is for a Vikings loss, which would give them a 7-9 record. The Bears are terrible, so the Vikings stand a good chance of winning, but with players defying Mike Zimmer’s orders, the last week of the season being divisional games and teams occasionally sleepwalking through the end of a lost season, stranger things have happened.
The Eagles need Matt Barkley to lead his team to victory over Sam Bradford and his team. What a season.
Cowboys at Eagles
With the Eagles win over the Giants, they are just a game back of the Vikings. With a Vikings loss, an Eagles win would see them leap frog the Vikings, as their strength of schedule, currently at .542, is too big to drop enough to lose a tiebreaker.
Cardinals at Rams
At 6-8-1, a Cardinals win and a Vikings loss will see them leap frog Minnesota on record alone, no tiebreaker needed.
Bills at Jets
The 7-8 Bills currently have a .496 strength of schedule, so the Eagles need the Bills to win along with the Vikings to lose to leap Minnesota.
Saints at Falcons
The Saints are also 7-8 and currently have a worse strength of schedule (.511) than the Vikings, so a Saints win and a Vikings loss is needed here to be sure of an improved pick.
Jaguars at Colts
Like the Saints, the Colts are 7-8 with a .511 strength of schedule. At home against the Jaguars, a Colts win might be the best chance for the Eagles/Vikings to move up a spot, even if the Vikings win.
Texans at Titans
At 8-7 the Titans sit ahead of the Vikings, but a loss and a Vikings win would see that end, as the Titans have a .462 strength of schedule, a gap too big to flip. The Eagles need a Marcus Mariota-less Titans win to help keep a ceiling on the Vikings.
Raiders at Broncos
The 8-7 Broncos could finish with the same record as the Vikings if Denver loses and Minnesota wins, but with a current .536 strength of schedule, a lot would have to go wrong for the Vikings to edge out the Broncos in a tie breaker, but a Broncos win against a Derek Carr-less Raiders team will take that completely out of consideration.
Ravens at Bengals
The Ravens are 8-7 and have a .507 strength of schedule. Like the Titans and Broncos, a Ravens win would keep them ahead of the Vikings and help keep their pick from entering the top half of the draft.
And then there is a game that hinges on the outcome of the Vikings game.
Panthers at Buccaneers
At 6-9, Carolina currently holds the 9th overall pick, 8-7 Tampa Bay the 17th or 18th pick (tied with the Ravens). A Vikings loss and a Panthers win would put the teams into a strength of schedule tiebreaker, which the Panthers (.513) currently hold over the Vikings (.516) by a very thin margin.
But if the Vikings win to improve to 8-8, then they need all the 8-7 teams ahead of them to win , which means a Buccaneers win would be necessary.
If the Vikings lose to the Bears:
Panthers over Buccaneers
Eagles over Cowboys
Cardinals over Rams
Bills over Jets
Saints over Falcons
Colts over Jaguars
If the Vikings beat the Bears
Buccaneers over Panthers
Titans over Texans
Ravens over Bengals
Broncos over Raiders