As we enter week 17, the NFL Playoff Picture is taking shape. Teams like Green Bay, San Francisco, Detroit, New England, Baltimore and New Orleans are already sure of their place at the dance. Some like the New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos are still fighting for their playoff lives. Green Bay is the only team which has all of their outcomes for the NFL Playoff Picture locked up (They have a first round bye and home field advantage throughout the playoffs). So let’s take a look at the NFL Playoff Picture and how it effects some of the games more notable teams this week.
The San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco would have loved to see a New Orleans loss last week so they could clinch up the number 2 seed (and a bye with home field advantage), but alas the amazing Drew Brees and the Who Dat crew killed Atlanta during week 16 keeping their hopes of a number 2 seed alive. San Francisco will now have to show up to play this week, because without a win over the Chargers they could still finish number three.
As far as their NFL Playoff Picture goes, conventional wisdom says hat defenses can’t win championships anymore, and this may just be the one team who proves that wrong. The 49ers hadn’t given up a rushing touchdown or allow a 100-yard rush all season until last week, which says a whole lot. Stop the rush and you force all who oppose you to play their game in the air, which is a lot riskier.
The Green Bay Packers
There is a reason why Green Bay is holding at 14-1 this season…. they are a fantastic football team. Having already secured the number 1 seed in the NFL, they can rest some of their starters this week heading into a first game bye in the playoffs.
Green Bay’s NFL Playoff Picture is looking really good for the defending champions. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers is unstoppable when at his best and just really fantastic when he’s not. This season he has thrown for 45 touchdowns and only six interceptions while posting a122.5 quarterback rating.
The New Orleans Saints
Drew Brees has been looking like a king lately. He broke Dan Marino’s single-season passing record with 5,087 yards in 15 games. He has also recorded a 108.4 quarterback rating while completing 70.7 percent of his passes for 41 touchdowns with only 13 interceptions. The defense hasn’t been the best in the NFL but with this offense firing on all cylinders who needs them to be?
The Saints NFL Playoff Picture looks amazing, because with Drew Brees the whole country may again be saying Who Dat!
The New York Giants/Dallas Cowboys
These two teams are the only ones left with it all on the line. Both posses similar mediocre records going into week 17, and one of them will finish atop the NFC East and roll into the playoffs. The only issue for both teams is they are just not very good. While anything can happen, don’t count on these two teams NFL Playoff Picture being very good.
Any ideas how the NFL Playoff Picture is going to shape up?