Updated Eagles Playoff Scenarios

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Minnesota Vikings

What does the Eagles’ loss to the Vikings and the Cowboys’ loss to the Packers mean for the Birds’ playoff chances?

Let’s take a look at all four scenarios that could play out next week.

1. Cowboys beat Redskins; Eagles beat Bears.

Week 17 would be for the division. The Eagles would enter the finale with a one-game lead, but the Cowboys own the tiebreaker. If both teams were to finish at 9-7 here, Dallas would get in.

2. Cowboys lose to Redskins; Eagles lose to Bears.

This is pretty much the same as the first scenario. Week 17 would be for the division. The only difference would be that the division winner would be 8-8, not 9-7.

3. Cowboys beat Redskins; Eagles lose to Bears.

This is why Dallas’ loss to the Packers was so big. Even in this scenario, Week 17 is for the division. Both teams would enter that game with 8-7 records.

The other interesting note here is that the night game for the Eagles would be meaningless in terms of the division. The only factor would be the difference between getting the three seed vs. getting the four seed.

Chip Kelly will have a decision to make if the Cowboys win the early game (1 p.m.). If that happens, the division still comes down to Week 17 regardless of what happens with the Eagles-Bears game.

4. Cowboys lose to Redskins; Eagles beat Bears.

This is the best-case scenario for the Eagles. If Dallas loses to Washington Sunday afternoon, the Eagles will go into the night game knowing they can clinch the division with a victory. Under this scenario, Week 17 would be meaningless.


What about the wild card?

This is no longer a factor. The Eagles cannot earn a wild-card bid. The Panthers and 49ers both have 10 wins. If the Eagles get to 10 wins, they’ll win the division. If they finish with less than 10 wins, the Panthers/Saints and 49ers would be ahead of them anyway for the wild card.


What about the No. 2 seed?

This too is no longer a possibility. The Saints and Panthers both have 10 wins, and they still have to play each other once. The Eagles cannot get to 11 wins regardless, so there will be no chance of a first-round bye.

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
Become a fan of Birds 24/7 on Facebook.

Around The Web

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.

  • pkeagle

    I’m just glad week 17 won’t be meaningless whatever we do next week as even if we clinch the division by beating the bears (and skins win) we will want to beat the Cowgirls for pride

    • ICDogg

      When you’re going to the playoffs you have to put a priority on the playoffs over a meaningless win “for pride”.

    • sprawl

      I think I get where you’re going but it’s possible that week 17 is meaningless in a GOOD way.

  • jb99

    if dallas wins vs the skins, do the eagles sit their starters vs the bears? there is nothing on the line.

    • sprawl

      Not in the first year of this new system/scheme on both sides of the ball. These guys are going to need all the experience they can get to avoid getting blown out by a team in the playoffs playing like Seattle did today.

    • ICDogg

      Sure there is… they could render week 17 meaningless by beating the Bears in that situation.

      • theycallmerob

        IC- if DAL wins next week, wk 17 Will be for the division no matter what

        • ICDogg

          Yeah, I read that wrong

          It’s a fair question, but I imagine they would play.

          Maybe it would determine 3 seed vs 4 seed? Don’t know.

          • BlindChow

            It would fit with Kelly’s “Every week is the Super Bowl” philosophy if they played. Plus, after this week, I can’t imagine Kelly thinking they earned a break.

          • ICDogg

            Especially since they will have prepared these guys all week to play.

    • anon

      Mentally its terrible especially coming off this game. Best thing we can do is stomp chi. But I’m starting bears recievers in all my leagues

    • Beavis

      After laying a turd against the Vikings, there is no way they ‘take the week off’ against the Bears just so their healthy for the Cowboys game. In the NFL you need the consistancy from your starters – especially heading into the playoffs (Week 17 really is a playoff game). You want your team firing on a cyclinders.
      Plus, I’m going to the game and don’t want to watch scrubs :)

    • Frank

      WRONG…WRONG….even if Cowboys win, this game is NOT meaningless for Eagles. Eagles will be playing for the important #3 seed, instead of the #4 seed….this could be a HUGE difference between playing a HOME game in later rounds ro an AWAY game, if one of the top teams were to lose……so this is BIG game to keep winning with momentum and to possibly get additional HOME game later in playoffs.

  • Guest

    The Bears game is only meaningless if the Cowboys, 9ers, and Panthers ALL win their earlier games. And the Panthers play the Saints.

  • ztom6

    nbc is probably regretting flexing that game now. Also, sucks to be a ticket holder for that game as well.

  • GiveMeABreak

    It’s hard to win 6 in a row in this league. Did not see game but have to imagine that there were moments in the game when we could have gotten control that did not swing our way. CK has done a pretty good job and defense has gotten team to a position that a lot of fans doubted it would reach. I don’t think we match up well with large wideouts for Bears and either Bears QB should have a good go against us. We have to hope the Skins come through and beat the boys for us. In any event, we are 1 and done in the playoffs even if we reach them. SF will have no problem with us. Still a respectable first year for Kelly but how to build a defense while we have this great O remains a problem.

    • JofreyRice

      If that’s the way it shakes out, it will have definitely exceeded my expectations. Never thought they’d make the playoffs. I’d have a pretty good feeling going into the offseason that the team was on the right track.

      • cliff henny

        i’m already there. we know this team has holes. maybe going 11-5 and winning home playoff game wouldnt be the best thing overall. look at dallas, they keep getting just far enough that it teases jones into keeping pieces. cole/graham and secondary were exposed, which is fine. not like what we thought was strength got exposed, d-line.

    • anon

      We actually match up really well against sf. I don’t think we get stomped

  • cliff henny

    kelly got us to best case scenario, a week 17 showdown with cowboys. minne game stunk, but overall, couldnt of asked for anything more.

    • GEAGLE

      Juicy holiday ain’t it?

      If that was a bad game for FOles, we have a lucrative future

      • cliff henny

        yeah, look at dalton tonight. what is this, his 50th start? eli threw 5 picks, romo consantly killing his team. pats lost big game so did broncos. it happens in nfl.
        dallas collapsing really lessens blow of that loss. got margin for error back. just really difficult to win on road in nfl. hopefully linc is house of horrors for bears. skins wont turn it over 7 times. that’s their super bowl. who knows.

    • nicksaenz1

      I kept saying we still gotta go out and play the game and I also said that I’d rather have faced a cold Cutler than McCown getting comfortable, and wouldn’t you know it, Cutler kept the Browns in that game before getting saved by Alshon Jeffrey. Here’s to hoping that there’s more QB drama in CHI and it gets to Cutler’s head, now that he’s a had a warmup game.

  • evanphilly

    Lock it up. Cousins torches the Cowboys D for a Washington victory and the Eagles smoke the Bears on national TV for the NFC East crown.


    Romo is such a joke it’s sad…they just pay Scandrick, and he gets abused lol….love our division :)

    • Andy124

      Unrelated to your post:
      Some of us heal more slowly, and that just slowed down… *sad laugh*


    I’m sweating, trying to overcome facing jaamal Charles in fantasy…I’m up 10 points, i got Gio Bernard vs. Torry smith tomorrow….sweating

    • G_WallyHunter

      Ouch, I pity anyone who had to play him this week damn

      • GEAGLE

        I’m up 22 points going into tonight against Torry smith. I scored 185, if I lose, I will snap…ATleast I won’t the scoring title already

  • Adam

    Getting slapped around by Minny is so much easier to swallow after seeing the Cowboys meltdown tonight. Burn the tape and move on. We’re still in control of our own destiny, which is all you can ask for in a playoff hunt.

  • Shane Brown

    Imagine what would happen if we clinch next week and then rest our starters for the cowboys game. What if vick goes in and has a 2010 MNF performance. Imagine how the national media will blow that up and be like, “Well i guess Vick is the perfect fit for this offense! they better start him in the playoffs. Foles is too young and inexperienced to win a playoff game.” How annoying would that be. The last thing i want is another vick and foles debate

    • theycallmerob

      There is no debate

      • Shane Brown

        I dont want there to be. I just feel like the media will attempt to make one in that scenario, although i admit the scenario i mentioned is pretty unlikely

        • morgan c

          Nah, one game no matter what wouldn’t do that. Foles would be 8-2 and Vick would have one good game. Nothing will put Vick in over Foles at this point.

      • Andy124

        No, but two games in a row now, some @()*&$ have called for Vick to replace Foles.

        Maybe beating a dead horse, but really don’t want him as a backup next year.

        • anon

          Have you seen Foles in the first 2 quarters of the last couple of games?

          • Andy124

            Have you?
            Have you seen Vick throughout his career?
            Have you seen other quarterbacks throughout the league?

          • nicksaenz1

            It’s only Nick Foles who’s not allowed to have moments of less than stellar player. Every other quarterback is understood to be human and have such moments.

          • Token

            Yea I dont get it. Wilson is the second coming when he throws for 2 TDs in a game in a perfect situation.

            Foles was dropped back like 45 freakin times and people expect everything he does to be perfect. Why?

            Wasnt this like his 14th start? Hes gonna make mistakes people. Thats part of the deal. You hope he learns from it.

            You look for things he does well that you need to have. He is willing to stand in there and take a hit to deliver a ball. Thats a must have.

            One thing I think is maybe the biggest thing he needs to work on is velocity, or decisiveness….dunno how to put it. Foles has enough arm to put good velocity behind intermediate throws. But I noticed he doesnt do that all the time. I dont know if he does this to make it more catchable or if hes not 100% decisive about the throw. Sometimes its mechanics. But im hoping as he grows more comfortable with everything he will stick it in there more.

          • hawaiieaglesfan

            The only problem Foles has is that we dont have a consistent d. Ironic isnt it same problem as Toiny Romo.

          • reb

            Except that Vick has seasons of flashes of incredible play followed by poor decision making and terrible play. The overall variability and his inability to stabilize it is what caused his stock to drop. All QB’s have bad days, but Vick’s, sadly, extended too long. “sadly” because I love watching the guy play – he’s exciting. I was rooting for his comeback. Just didn’t work out.

          • Bdawkbdawk

            Not saying that Vick would have been better, but Foles did not play well on Sunday. In fact, he had many Vick-like mistakes. Bad interception. Stupid Blacking penalty. And by my count, he took at least 3 sacks that were absolutely unforgivable. In Chip Kelly’s offense, this matters. His stats look good, but they really misrepresent his play.
            3rd and 2 at the 50 with the game clock waning he takes a sack. That’s a back breaker. Should have been two down territory, just a horrendous mental error.
            Our D lost us this game. But Fole’s bonehead decisions prevented us from stealing a victory.

          • theycallmerob

            “See matt cassel play one game yesterday? And alex Smith? Those are some all-pros!”

          • Richard Colton

            That was an insane comment. 400+ yards, 3TDs, 1Int on the road and people still won’t let go. That pass/catch by Ertz in the end zone? Dropping the ball between the CB and the sideline to Djax? Even when Foles is off…he’s on.

          • aub32

            Come on. I’m all for Foles should be starting but are we really going to say that throw was all that. The catch was amazing, the throw could have been better.

          • Richard Colton

            I’ll take 400 yards and three TDs on an off day. Granted, the stats don’t tell the whole story, but statistically, he played well. This wasn’t Dallas 2.0. Overall, I’m happy with how he played.

            The offense put up 30 points. The D couldn’t stop anyone. Putting this loss on Foles would be like blaming a 10-6 loss on the defense.

          • aub32

            Can’t wait for the All 22 to come out so we can see how many chances Foles had and missed.

    • Token

      That would only be a debate among morons and idiots. I dont think I have to name names.

      • Andy124

        Have to and want to don’t always go hand in hand.

    • TheCatalyst

      If Chip is resting starters, most likely he plays Barkley to keep his 1 and 1A both healthy.

      • The Truth

        Vick is not a 1A. He is a 2. Period. He will never start here again, and not start for a winning club the rest of his career.

  • Token

    Man, i turned the Dallas game off at half. Thought it was a blowout. Guess I missed the fun.

    The great news is this allows us to lose to the Bears and not be hurt by it. I view this as a very tough matchup. Great news.

  • SoCalEaglesFan

    An Eagles fan can’t ask for anything more than to enter the final game with a chance to beat the Cowboys for the playoffs… and knocking them out at the same time. I worry about Kelly’s sudden timidity to trust his players. Didn’t run because he didn’t believe they could block. Didn’t kickoff normally because he was scared his coverage unit couldn’t tackle a guy. That’s not how you win in the NFL.

  • Media Mike

    Making the playoffs in spite of this heartless choke job yesterday will be a nice consolation, but we now have a double vendetta vs. the Vikings that must be avenged. 2010 and 2013 losses to the Vikings ruining our playoff seeding is unacceptable.

  • Will

    Matt Cassel just picked the Eagles secondary apart yesterday…no pressure from our D-Line…Billy Davis what happened? Not enough blitzes…

    • aub32

      Bad tackling. Look at his 1st TD pass. We were around him, but we could not get him down.

  • Jason

    Number 2 scenario in this story is a bit wrong. If both teams lose next week, that doesn’t mean division winner will be 8-8. Eagles can still be 9-7 if they win week 17. Is this story assuming Dallas will win week 17?

  • Frank

    WRONG…WRONG….even if Cowboys win, this game is NOT meaningless for Eagles. Eagles will be playing for the important #3 seed, instead of the #4 seed….this could be a HUGE difference between playing a HOME game in later rounds ro an AWAY game, if one of the top teams were to lose……so this is BIG game to keep winning with momentum and to possibly get additional HOME game later in playoffs.