On Sunday afternoon, the Minnesota Vikings did what they needed to do in order to advance to the 2015 NFC playoffs, but it remains to be seen if they can get enough other dominoes to fall the right way to punch their post-season ticket.
The Vikings took care of business at TCF Bank Stadium, defeating the Chicago Bears by a final score of 38-17. Not all of the things they needed to have go right for them did so, but in the spirit of Lloyd Christmas, I'm tellin' you that there's a chance.
A loss by the Washington Redskins would have been beneficial to the Vikings, but they defeated the Buffalo Bills by a final score of 35-25 in the nation's capital. The Vikings also needed a loss by the Atlanta Falcons, but they broke out of their funk by knocking off the Jacksonville Jaguars by a score of 23-17.
With those results happening the way they did, the Vikings would need both a loss by the New York Football Giants and the Seattle Seahawks. They got half of that equation, as the Panthers remained undefeated, holding off a furious Giants' comeback to win by a score of 38-35. So, if the Cleveland Browns can go into CenturyLink Field and knock off the Seahawks, the hottest team in the NFL, the Vikings can clinch a playoff berth this week. Otherwise, it will have to wait at least one more week.
Even with the way the early games have fallen, the Vikings still make the 2015 NFC playoffs in 99% of all possible scenarios, according to the playoff simulator from the New York Times. So, regardless of what happens in the late games, a lot of things would have to go incredibly wrong for the Vikings for them to not be playing on the first weekend of the post-season.
We'll have all of the scenarios ironed out for you after all of Sunday's action has concluded.