Originally posted by 951NINER:
Originally posted by crabman82:
Originally posted by hondakillerzx:
even if seattle wins the division and we finish with a wildcard spot, its not the end of the world. get the top wild card spot and play the winner of the whack ass nfc east. itll be like having playoff bye anyway
1st off you're talking about a road playoff game and secondly we just lost the tie breaker to carolina. i dont think the 5 seed is a sure thing by any means.
The 5 seed will belong to CAR now. NO will win the south and CAR will get the 5 seed. The winner of the NFC North gets the 3rd and the SEA and NO get the top 2. We might have to fight off Chicago or Green Bay for the final wild card spot.
Carolina has three difficult games left - NE and NO (x2). Assuming they go 2-1 in those games and win the other 4, they'd finish 12-4. I actually think that may win the NFC South. But, regardless, it looks like even if they go 1-2 in their "tough" games they will likely finish 11-5.
So, can we finish 12-4? Not likely, as it would require beating either Seattle or NO and winning the other 5 games on our schedule. I think 10-6 or 11-5 is more realistic.
11-5 will secure a playoff spot. Chicago, Green Bay, Detroit, Arizona, Dallas, and Philly are the only other teams that can finish with a record of 11-5.
Green Bay is without Rogers for at least 2 more games. Lose one more and even if they finish 11-5 we own the tie breaker. In my opinion, Green Bay has suffered too many injuries to win 6 of their last 7.
Dallas and Philly would have to win out to finish 11-5. They play each other again, so one of them is winding up with 6 losses.
Chicago has games against GB, Dallas, Philly, Baltimore, and St. Louis. Not an easy schedule. Can they go 6-1 down the stretch? Unlikely in my opinion.
We are 6-3. We have games against TB, ATL, Ariz., St. Louis, and Washington. These are the teams that we have been beating this year and I see no reason that trend won't continue despite our significant flaws on offense.
I assume we will lose against Seattle. I'd be mildly surprised if we win against NO, but we have beaten them twice in a row and I think they are one of those teams that Fangio and Harbaugh "get" when it comes to preparing for ... so it wouldn't be a shocker.
Bottom line, I think we beat the teams we have been beating, lose to the teams we have been losing to this year, finish 11-5 and make the playoffs.
BUT, that record will only be good enough for the 6 seed barring a collapse by Carolina (i.e., it loses to NE and both times to NO)
Assuming the 6 seed, our road to the playoffs will likely look like this:
First Round: @ Detroit
Second Round: @ Seattle
Third Round: @ New Orleans or Carolina
Amazing what a one point loss does to your season. If we had won, the division would still be in reach but, perhaps as important given the likely playoff matchups, the 5th seed would have been locked up.