Now that the twelfth Sunday of the 2021 NFL regular season is here, it’s time to run through a Philadelphia Eagles-focused rooting guide for all of the Week 12 games. This exercise will be especially interesting this year since the Birds have more things to care about than usual due to owning picks from the Miami Dolphins and Indianapolis Colts in the 2022 NFL Draft.
NFC PLAYOFF PICTURE
2022 NFL DRAFT ORDER
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES at NEW YORK GIANTS: With the Dallas Cowboys losing on Thanksgiving, the Eagles can still win the NFC East. That is, unless they lose to the Giants. It’s time to get back to .500 and go on a run down the stretch. Root for the Eagles.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS at WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM: The Eagles benefit from a Seahawks win in two ways. 1) It potentially moves Seattle (pick owned by NYJ) ahead of Miami in the draft order. 2) It damages Washington’s chances of earning a playoff spot. Root for the Seahawks.
MINNESOTA VIKINGS at SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS: The Eagles are currently competing with both of these teams for wild card spots. San Francisco losing is preferable from the standpoint that they own a head-to-head tiebreaker over the Birds. Root for the Vikings.
LOS ANGELES RAMS at GREEN BAY PACKERS: The Rams have the seventh toughest remaining schedule in the league. Perhaps they’re not so locked in to the top wild card spot? The Eagles are closing to gaining ground on them than the Packers. Also, Green Bay winning helps to prevent Dallas from getting a top three seed ... assuming the Cowboys still win the NFC East. Root for the Packers.
DRAFT PICK WATCH
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS at INDIANAPOLIS COLTS: The Eagles are nearly about to clinch getting a first-round pick from the Colts. They’ll be rooting for that pick to be as favorable as possible. The Birds need the Colts to lose so they don’t make the playoffs and pick No. 19 in the very best case scenario. A Bucs win is also helpful here from the standpoint of keeping Dallas away from a top three playoff seed ... assuming the Cowboys still win the NFC East. Root for the Buccaneers.
CAROLINA PANTHERS at MIAMI DOLPHINS: The Dolphins are currently slated to pick at No. 7. It sure would be nice if that was a top five selection instead. Need Miami to rack up more losses. The Panthers winning isn’t the most ideal outcome to Philly’s wild card hopes but the Birds already own a tiebreaker over Carolina. And it’s probably not like Cam Newton is about to lead the Panthers on some incredible tear; Carolina has the eighth toughest remaining schedule. Root for the Panthers.
TENNESSEE TITANS at NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS: The Eagles want to see the Titans — and definitely not the Colts — win the AFC South. Root for the Titans.
PITTSBURGH STEELERS at CINCINNATI BENGALS: A Bengals win is slightly more damaging to Indy’s playoff odds than a Steelers win. Root for the Bengals.
ATLANTA FALCONS at JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS: Ideally, the Jags could win and find a way to fall behind Miami in the draft order. But that’s probably not happening. Better for the Falcons to win and stay behind Miami. Jacksonville losing also keeps them ahead of NYG in the draft order. The Falcons winning isn’t good for the Eagles when it comes to the wild card hunt but 1) Atlanta really stinks and 2) Philly obviously owns a tiebreaker over them. Root for the Falcons.
HOUSTON TEXANS at NEW YORK JETS: Neither team is probably going to win enough to move behind Miami in the draft order. But I’d argue the Texans have the better chance of doing so considering how the Jets look listless. Root for the Texans.
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS at DENVER BRONCOS: The Chargers winning keeps the Bolts ahead of Indy in the AFC playoff picture, which is what the Eagles want to happen. Root for the Chargers.
CLEVELAND BROWNS at BALTIMORE RAVENS: The Browns winning means more competition for Indy when it comes to a wild card spot. It also keeps Cleveland ahead of the Colts in the draft order. Root for the Browns.