Had the Washington Football Team been able to complete a comeback against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, the Philadelphia Eagles would’ve been officially eliminated from postseason contention with a loss to the Arizona Cardinals. Instead, the Birds are still alive despite being 4-9-1.
NFC PLAYOFF PICTURE
There is only one remaining scenario where the Eagles can win the NFC East at 6-9-1. It goes like this:
EAGLES — Beat Dallas in Week 16 and Washington in Week 17
GIANTS — Lose at least one of their final two games: at Baltimore in Week 16 or vs. Dallas in Week 17
WASHINGTON — Lose both of their final two games: vs. Carolina in Week 17 and at Philadelphia in Week 17
It can’t be said that this specific outcome is likely but it’s certainly not impossible. The Eagles are suddenly looking much more alive with Jalen Hurts at quarterback. The Giants have two straight losses and will probably drop at least one of their last two. It’s not so easy to project Washington to lose to the Panthers but Dwanye Haskins is pretty bad so it could happen if he’s starting in place of Alex Smith again.
In all honesty, it’s probably best for the Eagles’ long-term outlook to miss the playoffs and try to capitalize on a high draft pick. But there would obviously be value in getting Hurts some playoff experience! And if the Eagles are going to be as fun as they’ve been the past two weeks, it sure would be nice to see them play at least one extra game.
Here’s how Football Outsiders’ playoff odds project the NFC East:
Washington — 70.9%
Giants — 14.0%
Eagles — 10.0%
Cowboys — 5.1%
Assuming the Eagles can find a way to make the postseason, they could potentially be hosting the Los Angeles Rams (Week 2 rematch) or the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Hurts vs. Tom Brady!) at Lincoln Financial Field in January. The Rams are currently in the No. 5 spot after losing to the previously winless New York Jets on Sunday. Tampa has the easier remaining schedule and might be able to move up to No. 5. It’s also possible the Seattle Seahawks fall to No. 5 if the Rams beat them in Week 16.
Here’s how Football Outsiders’ playoff odds project the No. 5 seed:
Buccaneers — 63.4%
Rams — 19.6%
Seahawks — 9.8%
Cardinals — 6.6%
Saints — 0.6%
NFC PLAYOFF PICTURE
NFL DRAFT ORDER
Here’s how the non-playoff teams currently stack up via Tankathon:
The Eagles are currently set to pick at No. 7 after entering Week 15 in the No. 9 spot.
The Eagles obviously can’t catch the New York Jets or Jacksonville Jaguars for a top two pick. It’s also going to be hard to get as high as No. 3 with the Cincinnati Bengals (15-point underdogs) likely losing to the Pittsburgh Steelers tonight and possibly losing out. There’s also no guarantee the Falcons or Panthers win again this season. Houston should be able to beat Cincy.
|Week 16||at Cowboys (5-9)||vs. Bengals (2-10-1)||at Chiefs (13-1)||at Football Team (6-8)||at Texans (4-10)|
|Week 17||vs. Football Team (6-8)||vs. Titans (10-4)||at Buccaneers (9-5)||vs. Saints (10-4)||vs. Ravens (9-5)|
If the Eagles lose out, they’re reasonably looking at the No. 6 overall pick. Maybe No. 5 if they get lucky.
For the sake of tanking purposes, Philly’s game against Dallas this week is a must-lose. If the Eagles win out but fail to get help in making the playoffs, they could be in danger of falling as low as No. 13.
If the Eagles do make the playoffs, they’ll be picking No. 19 at the highest. Their pick will ultimately be based on where they finish in the postseason.
Have you changed your mind on what you’re rooting for? The following poll results are from mid-way through last week:
Let’s see if there’s been any change:
Which are you rooting for: Eagles making the playoffs or getting a better draft pick?
This poll is closed
Making the playoffs
Getting a better draft pick