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NFC Playoff Picture, Week 13: Seahawks drop out of playoff spot, are probably screwed

The Rams are hot, the Seahawks are not.

Cleveland Browns v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

With a significantly remade roster from the Super Bowl team two seasons ago, the Los Angeles Rams are still better positioned to make the NFC playoffs than the Seattle Seahawks.

Despite Joe Flacco’s best efforts, the Cleveland Browns eventually fell apart late and the Rams were able to pull away for a 36-19 win. It’s the Rams’ third straight win, and after starting 3-6 while the Seahawks were 6-3, both teams are now 6-6 and the Rams have the head-to-head tiebreaker.

Seattle is now out of a playoff spot even before the Sunday Night Football clash between the Green Bay Packers and Kansas City Chiefs. It’s very likely that they don’t get back in, either.

Update: The Packers won, so the Seahawks basically had almost every result go against them.

Here are the updated standings.

NFC Playoff Standings

1. Philadelphia Eagles (10-2)

2. San Francisco 49ers (9-3, 7-1 NFC)

3. Detroit Lions (9-3, 6-2 NFC)

4. Atlanta Falcons (6-6)

Wild Card

5. Dallas Cowboys (9-3)

6. Minnesota Vikings (6-6, 6-3 NFC)*

7. Green Bay Packers (6-6) *

Everyone Else

8. Los Angeles Rams (6-6, 4-4 NFC) *

9. Seattle Seahawks (6-6, 5-4 NFC) *

10. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-7, head-to-head over NO)

11. New Orleans Saints (5-7)

12. New York Giants (4-8, 3-4 NFC)

13. Chicago Bears (4-8)

14. Washington Commanders (4-9)

15. Arizona Cardinals (3-10)


16. Carolina Panthers (1-11)

* In a multi-team tiebreaker, you first use divisional tiebreakers to get to one team per division. With Green Bay and Minnesota, the Vikings have a head-to-head win over the Packers. Regarding Los Angeles and Seattle, the Rams swept the Seahawks this year. Minnesota and Los Angeles go to a tiebreaker, which the Vikings win on Conference record to take 6th place. The Rams go back to a tiebreaker, this time with the Packers, and Green Bay wins based on head-to-head record to claim 7th. We are then left with the Seahawks and Rams, where we’ve already established that Los Angeles has the tiebreaker, thus claiming 8th. Seattle is 9th.

Unless the Seahawks buck up and start winning games again, this week’s results were probably the knockout punches. Take a look at the remaining schedules for the four teams remaining:

Vikings: at Raiders, at Bengals, vs. Lions, vs. Packers, at Lions

Packers: at Giants, vs. Buccaneers, at Panthers, at Vikings, vs. Bears

Rams: at Ravens, vs. Commanders, vs. Saints, at Giants, at 49ers

Seahawks: at 49ers, vs. Eagles, at Titans, vs. Steelers, at Cardinals

Only two from these four can get in (under the assumption the NFC East runner-up will be the No. 5 seed). Seattle may very well have to win a minimum of four games to make the playoffs at this point. They have not shown a lot to suggest that this is possible, and even if they finish 10-7 they better hope the tiebreakers fall in their favor. Best case scenario is a couple of these teams finish up 9-8, which seems possible for the Rams and the Vikings.

Seattle has no one else to blame for this predicament.