NFC playoff picture entering Week 17

CREATED Dec. 11, 2011 - UPDATED: Dec. 27, 2011

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GREEN BAY - The following describes the NFC's playoff scenarios after the Week 16.

Team that has clinched the top seed in the NFC playoffs:
the Green Bay Packers (14-1).

The road to Indianapolis goes through Lambeau Field.

The Green Bay win on Christmas night means the Packers will play every NFC playoff game at Lambeau Field.

Next game: vs. DET (Sun., 12 CT)

Team in control of their destiny for a first-round bye in the NFC playoffs (2 seed):
San Francisco 49ers (12-3).

The 49ers have a magic number of one to clinch #2 seed and do so with a win or a New Orleans Saints loss.

That's because the 49ers own the conference tiebreaker advantage.

Next game: at STL (Sun., 12 CT)

Team in control of the third seed in the NFC playoffs: New Orleans Saints (12-3).

The New Orleans Saints are at worst the #3 seed after clinching the NFC South with win Monday night against Atlanta. The Saints clinch the #2 seed with a win and SF loss.

Next game: vs. CAR (Sun., 12 CT)

Teams in control of their destiny for the fourth seed in the NFC playoffs: the Dallas Cowboys (8-7)/ New York Giants (8-7).

After the victory the Giants put on the Jets (which knocked Philadelphia out of the playoff race), it's down to the Giants and Cowboys for the NFC East.

They will meet in a head-to-head tussle at the Meadowlands next Sunday night with a playoff berth at stake.

Next game: DAL at NYG (Sun., 7:30 CT)

Team in control of the NFC five seed:
the Detroit Lions (10-5).

 

The Lions have earned their first playoff game since 1999 after blowing out San Diego, 38-10.

A Lions win in the last regular season game or an Atlanta loss, gives Detroit the number five seed to play the winner of NYG/DAL in the first round of the NFC's playoffs.

Next game: at GB (Sun., 12 CT)

Team in control of the NFC six seed: the Atlanta Falcons (9-6).

 

Atlanta has clinched a playoff berth because of the Chicago Bears' loss to Green Bay. Would clinch the No. 5 seed with a win and Lions loss.

Next game: vs. TB (Sun., 12 CT)