With four games remaining in the regular season, the Eagles find themselves in the midst of the playoff race. At 8-4 and tied atop the NFC East, they clearly have aspirations of grabbing the division title.
Here's a look at the playoff possibilities for the Eagles.
Best Case Scenario: No. 2 seed - The Eagles can still catch the Minnesota Vikings to grab the coveted first-round bye. If the Eagles win out and get to 12-4, they will have a 10-2 record within the conference. The Vikings would need to lose at least two of their four remaining games - three of which are against NFC opponents. Since the Vikings only have one conference loss at the moment, if two of their losses came to NFC teams, the Eagles would get the bye based on conference record. If the two teams finished with identical conference records, the next tie-breaker would be their respective records against common opponents. The Eagles and Vikings have four common opponents on their schedules - the Giants, the 49ers, the Bears and Panthers.
The Arizona Cardinals can also finish at 12-4 (they have the same conference record as the Eagles at the moment). If there were a three-way tie at 12-4 and all three teams had identical conference records, the next tie-breaker would be strength of victory.
Wild Card Scenario: If the Eagles don't win the division, they'll be fighting for one of the wild card spots. A loss this week to the Giants would give both teams identical 8-5 records, and each team would have three losses within the conference - although a two-way tie between intra-division teams is first decided by division record. Outside of the NFC East, the other factor in the wild card race is the Green Bay Packers. The Packers are currently 6-3 within the NFC.
The same procedure for breaking three-way ties for the wild card applies as above. After conference record is record against common opponents, followed by strength of victory.
Of course, the Eagles could still find themselves on the outside looking in to the playoffs. But the bottom line is that they still control their own destiny, especially in regards to winning the NFC East.
A win against the Giants will put them in very good position, and they'd be able to clinch a playoff spot next week at home against the 49ers. A loss, however, would make things much more complicated.
For more on the full tie-breaking procedures, click here.
-- Posted by Bo Wulf, 12:57 p.m., December 13