After the Redskins beat the Eagles they still are on the outside of the playoff seeding looking in. But there still is plenty of life in their hopes for making the playoffs in two straight seasons for the first time since 1991-1992.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who were a half game ahead of Washington for the sixth and final playoff spot going into Sunday, beat the Saints to move to 8-5. The status quo stuck and the Bucs remain a half game ahead of the Redskins.
And on Sunday night the Giants held on to beat the Cowboys. They remain a game and a half ahead of the Redskins. Washington and New York play on the last day of the season.
The Redskins didn’t get any good news regarding the teams directly behind them either. The Packers thumped the Seahawks and the Vikings beat the Jaguars. Both of those teams moved to 7-6, and remained a half game being Washington.
There was some better news a little bit further down in the playoff standings. The losses by the Eagles and Saints and the Cardinals’ loss to the Dolphins combined with the wins by the Redskins and others just about knocked those teams out of realistic contention. While none of them are mathematically eliminated the all are sitting on five wins with three to play. It seems unlikely that an 8-8 (or, in the case of the Cardinals, an 8-7-1) team will make the postseason so even winning out is likely to get them to the postseason. We will stop examining those teams as potential threats to make it.
So here is where we are. The Redskins and Vikings have two home games remaining, the others have one. As far as teams that currently have winning records, the Giants and Packers play two, the other three play just one.
Giants (9-4): Lions, @Eagles, @Redskins
Bucs (8-5): @Cowboys, @Saints, Panthers
Redskins (7-5-1): Panthers, @Bears, Giants
Vikings (7-6): Colts, @Packers, Bears
Packers (7-6): @Bears, Vikings, @Lions
It looks like the Redskins’ path to the playoffs starts with winning their three remaining games to finish 10-5-1. After their losses to the Cowboys and Cardinals and yesterday’s results they are out of wiggle room. Mathematically they could still get in with nine wins but they would need a lot of help.
But three wins alone won’t get them in. They need to Bucs to lose at least one of their remaining three games or they would need the Giants to lose at least one of the two games before they meet the Redskins in the season finale.