The Green Bay Packers’ playoff fate is pretty clear. They’ll play either the Minnesota Vikings or Seattle Seahawks at Lambeau Field in the first round or they’ll head to Washington.
Obviously, for one of the first two scenarios to play out, the Packers need to beat the Vikings in week 17. That would make them NFC North champions and give them their home playoff game.
A loss gives the Vikings the division and drops the Packers to the No. 5 seed. That’s how they end up facing Washington, which clinched the NFC East this past weekend. The Packers cannot drop to No. 6 because of their early-season win over the Seahawks.
Here’s how the Packers would get each result.
Vikings at Packers: Green Bay beats Minnesota, Seattle beats Arizona. A Minnesota loss and Seattle win drops the Vikings to the No. 6 seed.
Seahawks at Packers: Green Bay beats Minnesota, Arizona beats Seattle. Minnesota remains at No. 5 with a loss, as long as Seattle also loses.
Packers at Washington: Minnesota beats Green Bay.
Some people have suggested the Packers are better off losing to the Vikings in week 17 so they can face Washington in the first round.
That’s a pretty stupid suggestion. If they beat the Vikings in week 17 it will be the second time this season they’ve done so. Why wouldn’t the Packers want to face a team they obviously own at home in the first round?
We get it. Washington plays in the NFC Least, but they’ve been playing some decent ball lately. They’ve won their last three and have put up at least 35 points in their last two. That Kirk Cousins creep can roll.
The Packers want nothing to do with Washington right now.
If they’re going to have a shot at a first-round win, the Packers want the Vikings.