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The Vikings Are In the Post-Season. . .As Of Now

Okay, with New Orleans destroying Atlanta at this point. . .it's 34-14, Saints, with 2:15 left in the game. . .here's what the NFC playoff picture is going to look like in about 10-15 minutes.  Or, more likely, by the time I finish this post.

Team W-L Conf W-L Div W-L H2H Tiebreakers NFC Games Left AFC Games Left
MIN (6) 7-6 5-5 2-3 None CHI, WAS @ DEN
NO 6-7 5-4 3-3 None ARZ, PHI, @ CHI None
WAS 6-7 4-5 1-3 DET, ARZ @ NYG, @ MIN, DAL None
ARZ 6-7 3-6 2-3 None @NO, ATL, STL None
DET 6-7 4-7 3-2 None @ GB @ SD, KC

I've made a couple of assumptions for the table at this point.  Those assumptions are

-The Giants are in.  They're 9-4, and while they haven't officially clinched a spot yet, the ONLY way they'll miss the post-season is if they lose their last three games and the Vikings and Saints BOTH win out.  Hence, I'm giving them one of the two wild-card spots.

-The other assumption is that it's going to take a 9-7 record to make it to the post-season in the NFC.  I say that because of the three teams that already have 8 losses, two of them can't come out with winning records against the conference (Chicago and Philadelphia), and the other (Carolina) has an amazingly tough schedule for their last 3 games, and I have no reason to believe they're going to run the table.  Hence, if you have 8 losses already, you're dead to me at this point.

So, let's take a look at this, shall we?  Outside of our game on Monday night, here are the big games for us to track in Week 15.

Arizona at New Orleans - Basically an elimination game in the playoff chase.  Both the Cardinals and the Saints are 6-7, and will both be fighting to avoid that killer 8th loss.  So, who's a Viking fan to cheer for?

The answer is. . .the Arizona Cardinals.  Why?  Because if we were to end up tied with the Cardinals, there's a very good chance that we would beat them in either the "conference record" tiebreaker (provided that we beat both the Bears and the Redskins) or the "common opponents" tiebreaker (if the Cardinals lose to Atlanta).  I might get more into detail on this later in the week, but for now, I'll just say that it's better for us if Arizona wins than it is if New Orleans wins.

Of course, if we win our next three, it doesn't matter, because no one can catch us anyway.  Shoot, if we win the next two for sure, it's going to be very hard for anyone else to pass us.

Washington at New York Giants - We're cheering for the Giants in this one.  Why?  The Giants are in anyway. . .a win here would just mathematically seal it for them.  But more importantly, it would pretty well put the kibosh on the Redskins.

Detroit at San Diego - A Chargers win here would continue Detroit's slide, and pretty much put the fork into their playoff hopes.

Seattle at Carolina and Philadelphia at Dallas - If, for some reason, you're still scared of the teams that are currently sitting at 5-8, pull for Seattle and Dallas.

If you'd like to see an explanation of the post-season possibilities that involves FAR more mathematics than my mind is equipped to handle at this point in the evening, click right here and check it out.

So, to review, this weekend we're pulling for Arizona, the New York Giants, San Diego, Seattle, and Dallas.

That's all for now, folks. . .have a good evening!