We are deep enough in December to where if you have not started your Christmas shopping then you are setting yourself up for a couple of stressful weekends in a row. Soon enough poinsettias will decorate the sets of every NFL primetime game, this truly is the most wonderful time of the year.
Adding to the yuletide-ness of it all is that the Dallas Cowboys are playing very well. The Cowboys are playing so well, in fact, that many people believe/agree that they are the second-best team in the NFL. Having that be true in mid-December is obviously nothing to really brag about though as we all want to see this team have success in the playoffs.
But in order for that to happen the Cowboys have to reach the postseason first. Like they did last week the Cowboys enter Week 15 with a number of playoff-clinching scenarios and thankfully the first one is totally and completely in their control.
Win and they are in.
Dallas Cowboys playoff berth-clinching scenarios for Week 15
- Cowboys win/tie
- Buccaneers lose + Lions win/tie + 49ers win/tie
- Buccaneers lose + Lions win/tie + Rams lose/tie
- Buccaneers lose + Vikings lose/tie + Lions win/tie
- Buccaneers lose + Vikings lose/tie + Rams lose/tie
- Buccaneers lose + Vikings lose/tie + Seahawks lose/tie
- Buccaneers tie + Lions win/tie
- Buccaneers tie + Rams lose/tie
- Buccaneers tie + Seahawks lose/tie
- Falcons lose/tie + Packers lose + Lions win/tie
- Falcons lose/tie + Packers lose + Rams lose/tie
- Falcons lose/tie + Packers lose + Seahawks lose/tie
- Seahawks lose/tie + Rams lose/tie
- Seahawks lose/tie + Vikings loss + Giants win + Patriots win + Jets win + Browns win + Steelers win + Titans win + Chargers win
All told there are quite a number of hypothetical situations where the Cowboys can clinch a playoff spot this weekend, especially given that ties from various teams punch their ticket as well, but thankfully all they have to do is win in order to secure a spot in the tournament for the third year in a row.
While nothing is ever a given, it obviously seems like a matter of time until the Cowboys will officially clinch a playoff berth in 2023 and when they do they will have established a third straight season of postseason play for the first time since 1994-1996. That was also the last time that the Cowboys won double-digit games in three straight seasons which they just matched with Sunday night’s victory.
For what it is worth, the scenarios listed above are all relative to the Cowboys simply securing a playoff spot. Given that Dallas’ place in the playoffs is just about inevitable simply getting in is no longer the focus (a privilege not afforded to many NFL franchises). Do not be surprised when our rooting guide comes out later this week and suggests rooting for things that may run a bit counter to some of these scenarios as we are now wanting the Cowboys to have the best possible situation in the playoffs which means they need help in some other ways.