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NFC playoff picture: Cowboys and Eagles to meet in divisional round?

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If the NFC playoffs were to start today ...

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

The NFL has reached its halfway mark, and while there is still a lot of football left to be played, today we'll ask ourselves the question, what if the NFC playoffs were to start today?

As it stands today, the Eagles, Saints, Vikings, and Rams would be the respective division champs, the Panthers would be the first wildcard team, and the Cowboys would be the second wildcard, beating out the Seahawks on the strength of their conference record and potentially the Packers (if they were to lose tonight).

Here's what the current playoff picture would look like.

Seed Team W/L Record Div. Record Conf. Record
1 Philadelphia 8-1 3-0 6-0
2 New Orleans 6-2 2-0 5-1
3 Minnesota 6-2 2-1 4-1
4 LA Rams 6-2 2-1 4-2
WC 1 Carolina 6-3 2-1 4-3
WC 2 Dallas 5-3 2-0 4-2

Quick update on the tiebreakers for playoff participants: Division leaders are determined by the best overall division record, the seeding would normally be determined by head-to-head record, but absent head-to-head matchups so far, the seeding is determined by the conference record. Wildcard berths are also determined by best overall record, then by head-to-head, and then by the conference record.

In the scenario outlined above, the Cowboys would have to travel to Minnesota for the wildcard round and would then, if they won, face the Eagles in the divisional round.

There is of course still a chance the Cowboys could wrangle the division title from the Eagles, but that is looking like a remote chance at this point. The Eagles are playing successful football right now, and unless they hit a slump down the stretch, it will be hard for the Cowboys to catch up to them, even with the two head-to-head matchups still to play.

But the Cowboys are not locked into that No. 2 wildcard spot. If they were to get the No. 1 wildcard spot, they'd play the Rams in the wildcard round, and wouldn't face the Eagles until the NFC Championship game - if the Eagles make it that far.

How do you like the Cowboys' playoff chances at the halfway mark of the season?


Here's what the current playoff picture in the AFC would look like.

Seed Team W/L Record Div. Record Conf. Record
1 Pittsburgh 6-2 3-0 4-1
2 New England 6-2 1-0 3-1
3 Kansas City 6-3 2-1 4-2
4 Tennessee 5-3 2-1 4-3
WC 1 Jacksonville 5-3 2-1 5-2
WC 2 Buffalo 5-3 1-1 3-2