The NFL regular season is one week till its conclusion; for many teams, their opportunity to make the NFL playoff relies on several different outcomes, some of which are out of their control. Meanwhile for the Green Bay Packers, the question is not whether the Packers will make the playoffs, but whom they will play.
With their loss to the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, the Packers forfeit their chances to possess a first-round bye in the playoffs. However, due to their playoff clinch two weeks ago against the Oakland Raiders, they have qualified for a first round match against three prospective teams, with two of the potential matchups being hosted at Lambeau Field.
With the NFC North title on the line against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, here are the possible scenarios for week one of the NFC playoffs:
No. 3 Green Bay Packers vs. No. 6 Minnesota Vikings
Green Bay must defeat the Minnesota Vikings, and the Seattle Seahawks must defeat the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
If the Packers defeat the Vikings on Sunday’s NFC North championship game, the Packers will have to win another one only a week later to advance past the wild card playoff round. With the clinching of the division, the Packers would host the Vikings if the Seattle Seahawks defeat the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. The Vikings would then earn the second wild card position and make the trip to Lambeau field for consecutive weeks. Whether this matchup will play out similar to the 2012 scenario did (in which the Vikings beat the Packers in week 17, but dropped the wild card game), remains to be seen. However, the Vikings likely won’t go down easy as they look for their first playoff birth since 2012.
The Packers own the series record between the two teams, 59-49-2.
No. 3 Green Bay Packers vs. No. 6 Seattle Seahawks
Green Bay must defeat Minnesota, and the Arizona Cardinals must defeat the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.
If this scenario plays out, Green Bay would get a chance at revenge against Seattle, who cut the Packers’ just one game short of a Super Bowl appearance just last season. Historically, these two teams have built a rivalry over the past decade, as the teams have squared up seven times since 2008. Since the infamous Hail Mary touchdown by the Seahawks in 2012, the Packers are just 1-3 against the Seahawks. Could the first round of the playoffs feature a Super Bowl-esque atmosphere?
The Packers own the series record between the two teams, 11-8.
No. 4 Washington Redskins vs. No. 5 Green Bay Packers
Minnesota must defeat Green Bay.
In the only scenario in which Green Bay would be featured as a underdog in regards to seating, the wild-card winning Packers would travel to FedEx Field to take on the Washington Redskins in Landover, MD. Although noted as the underdog, some speculate that this matchup may be the best for the Packers, as the Redskins tabbed the NFC East conference championship in a relatively weak division. With a win on Sunday, the Redskins would advance to 9-7 and potentially own the worst record in the NFC playoffs. The last time these two teams met, the Packers walked away with a win back in 2013, 38-20. They only met in the playoffs once, when the Redskins made their way to the Super Bowl back in 1972.
The Packers own the series record between the two teams, 19-14-1.
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