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2014 NFL Playoffs: Remaining Strength Of Schedule For All NFC Playoff Contenders

The remaining schedule could easily play a key role in determining which teams make it to the playoffs and which don't so we look at the remaining schedules of all NFC playoff contenders.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Four NFC playoff contenders saw early Week 13 action on Thanksgiving. The Lions, Eagles and Seahawks improved their playoff odds with a win, the Cowboys and 49ers took a step back in their quest for a playoff spot. But with four games remaining (five for some teams) the playoff race remains wide open.

The only team officially eliminated from playoff contention in the NFC are the New York Giants, who saw their last playoff dreams go up in smoke on Thursday when a Lions win over the Bears removed any remaining mathematical chance.

With the playoff race being as tight as it is, the remaining schedule could easily play a key role in determining which teams make it to the tournament, so it's worth taking a look at what the finishing schedule looks like for the remaining playoff contenders.

  • The 8-4 Seahawks close out the season against teams with a combined record of 29-17, which translates to a .630 winning percentage, the highest among among the four teams competing for the two NFC wild-card spots.
  • The 7-5 49ers, who are one game behind the Lions, Cowboys, and Seahawks (all 8-4) have the second toughest remaining schedule at .556.
  • The 8-4 Cowboys have to play three of their remaining four games on the road, where they'll face a combined strength of schedule of .521.
  • The 8-4 Lions are the fourth wildcard contender and face the easiest remaining schedule with .422, though three out of their remaining four games are division games.

Here's a full look at the remaining schedules after the Thanksgiving games. I've omitted the NFC South because whichever team stumbles into the division title is locked into the fourth seed and plays no further role in the playoff race.

NFC East Philadelphia (9-3) Dallas (8-4) - -
Opp. Record .478 (22-24) .521 (24-22)
Week 14 Seattle (8-4) at Chicago (5-7)
Week 15 Dallas (8-4) at Philadelphia (9-3)
Week 16 at Washington (3-8) Indianapolis (7-4)
Week 17 at New York Giants (3-8) at Washington (3-8)
NFC North Green Bay (8-3) Detroit (8-4) - -
Opp. Record .518 (28-27) .422 (19-26)
Week 13 New England (9-2) - -
Week 14 Atanta (4-7) Tampa Bay (2-9)
Week 15 at Buffalo (6-5) Minnesota (4-7)
Week 16 at Tampa Bay (2-9) at Chicago (5-7)
Week 17 Detroit (8-4) at Green Bay (8-3)
NFC West Arizona (9-2) Seattle (8-4) San Francisco (7-5)
Opp. Record .509 (28-27) .630 (29-17) .556 (25-20)
Week 13 at Atanta (4-7) - - - -
Week 14 Kansas City (7-4) at Philadelphia (9-3) at Oakland (1-10)
Week 15 at St. Louis (4-7) San Francisco (7-5) at Seattle (8-4)
Week 16 Seattle (8-4) at Arizona (9-2) San Diego (7-4)
Week 17 at San Francisco (7-5) St. Louis (4-7) Arizona (9-2)

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