Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Saints, 49ers and Patriots can clinch playoff spots this week

Mike Florio and Chris Simms examine the NFC playoff picture after Week 12 as the 49ers, Saints and Seahawks look to be separating themselves from the rest of the pack.

No teams have booked spots in the playoffs yet this season, but three of the 12 teams in the field could change that by the time Week 13 comes to an end.

The NFL released scenarios that would lead to playoff berths for the Patriots, 49ers and Saints this week.

New Orleans has the most straightforward path and a chance to clinch a spot before the other two teams. If they beat the Falcons on Thursday night, they’ll be the NFC South champs. They’d also win the division with a tie and a Panthers loss or tie.

The 49ers will clinch a playoff berth with a win and a Rams loss to the Cardinals. A tie with the Ravens and a Rams loss would also get them into the postseason.

New England would lock up a spot with a win and losses or ties by either the Raiders or the Steelers. If the Patriots tie the Texans, they’d get in with losses by at least two of the Raiders, Steelers and Colts.