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NFC Playoff Picture: Eagles gain breathing room with Saints loss to Rams

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Updated standings.

Chicago Bears v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Here’s a look at the updated NFC playoff picture now that Week 12 is mostly over.

NFC PLAYOFF PICTURE

Top six seeds

1 - Philadelphia Eagles: 10-1 overall, 8-0 conference

2 - Minnesota Vikings: 9-2 overall, 7-1 conference

3 - Los Angeles Rams: 8-3 overall, 5-3 conference (direct tie-breaker over NO)

4 - New Orleans Saints: 8-3 overall, 6-2 conference (direct tie-breaker over CAR)

5 - Carolina Panthers: 8-3 overall, 4-3 conference

6 - Atlanta Falcons: 7-4 overall, 6-1 conference (direct tie-breaker over SEA)

In the hunt

7 - Seattle Seahawks: 7-4 overall, 5-3 conference

8 - Detroit Lions: 6-5 overall, 5-4 conference

9 - Green Bay Packers: 5-6 overall, 4-4 conference (direct tie-breaker over DAL)

10 - Dallas Cowboys: 5-6 overall, 4-4 conference

11 - Washington Redskins: 5-6 overall, 4-5 conference

12 - Arizona Cardinals: 5-6 overall, 3-5 conference

Analysis

The Eagles maintained their spot as the No. 1 seed after soundly beating the Chicago Bears by a final sore of 31 to 3. With the win, the Eagles can now OFFICIALLY clinch the NFC East on Thursday Night Football this week if the Cowboys lose to Washington. If Dallas wins somehow, the Eagles can still clinch by beating the Seahawks next Sunday.

The Vikings stand at No. 2 after beating the Lions on Thanksgiving. Now they have to play both the Falcons and the Panthers on the road in back-to-back games. For Philly’s sake, it’d be great if they lost at least one of those. And preferably both.

The Eagles gained a little more breathing room in the playoff picture with the Saints losing to the Rams. New Orleans drops to the No. 4 seed with the loss. They still have some tough NFC South games to play, too.

As for the Rams, they play the Cardinals in Week 13. Then they host the Eagles at home before going to play the Seahawks in Seattle. It’d be great for Philly to beat them in a couple weeks.

The Panthers have won three in a row after somehow losing to the Bears in Chicago by a score of 17 to 3. They’re chasing the Saints for the NFC South crown. New Orleans already beat them once this season.

Speaking of the NFC South, the Falcons are heating up. They’ve won four out of their last five. Atlanta holds a valuable tie-breaker over Seattle that’s currently keeping the latter out of the playoff picture.

The Seahawks can still push for the NFC West title. They already beat the Rams once this season and they’ll play again soon.

The Lions, Packers, Cowboys, Cardinals, and Washington are all on the outside hunting for a wild card berth. Detroit is ahead of that group right now and their remaining schedule isn’t too difficult.

Green Bay lost to the Steelers on Sunday evening. That’s good for everyone because it means Aaron Rodgers playing in the post-season is less likely.