If I told you before the NFL season started, that as we approach Week 13 that the Packers, Seahawks, Giants, and Cowboys would all be on the outside looking in at a playoff spot, you would have looked at me like I was crazy. But that is the case. The NFC has some new, unexpected, exciting teams playing at a high level and looking to make a run to the Super Bowl. I’m going to break down the teams in the hunt for a playoff spot as the NFL regular season begins to wind down.
Thus far through the season, the Eagles seem to be not only the best team in the NFC, but the entire NFL. With Carson Wentz more than proving his worth as a franchise QB, and the defense preforming at such a high level, the Eagles have a buzz around them. Can this be the year that Philly finally brings home a Super Bowl Trophy? The Eagles biggest obstacle is, unlike the Patriots in the AFC, they don’t have a cake walk to the Super Bowl.
As everyone predicted, Case Keenum has led the Minnesota Vikings to a 9-2 record and first place in the NFC North. This team is legit, their defense is among the very best in the league that is coupled with offensive weapons such as Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs. The Vikings are a force to be reckoned with in a tough NFC playoff picture.
Los Angeles Rams=Contender
Basically, read above. The Rams and Vikings are very similar in the sense that they both have over-achieving QBs and an elite defense to lead their team. The Rams have seemed to rally behind their Head Coach, Sean McVay, and the way he coaches. The Rams making a playoff run would be a great turnaround story for the NFL.
New Orleans Saints=Contender
The Saints are back to prominence in the NFC as they once again have one of the most explosive offenses in the league. In past years, the Saints have been a full-blown aerial attack led by Drew Brees, but this year, they are led by a two-headed monster in the backfield, Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara. One aspect of the Saints that could give them an edge is that Drew Brees has been through the playoffs before and he will be facing less experienced QBs such as; Carson Wentz, Jared Goff, and Case Keenum. If the Saints can clinch home field advantage they are extremely dangerous, because the Saints are at their very best in the Super Dome.
— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) November 26, 2017
The Panthers are a good team, but in a crowded NFC they simply can’t match up to their foes. There are better defenses than the Panthers, in the Rams in Vikings, and there are better offenses in the Eagles and Saints. If the Panthers were in the AFC, they would absolutely be a contender, but in the extremely competitive NFC there is just no room for them at the top.
The Falcons are the latest case of a Super Bowl Hangover. Everything about their team has gotten worse from last year, including their Quarterback; Matt Ryan. If they couldn’t get it done last year, then they most definitely won’t this year.
Much like the Saints, experience plays a huge factor in the Seahawks being contenders. For Seattle it is not only Russell Wilson who has playoff experience, it is the Head Coach; Pete Carrol, and major parts of their defense such as; Kam Chancellor, Bobby Wagner, and Michael Bennett. Experience is priceless in the playoffs, and the Seahawks have the most of it in the NFC.
This is what the Lions do, give their fans enough hope for them to think they have a shot to do something this year, then they inevitably crash and burn towards the end of the season.