Okay, we are down to 7 teams that will make the NFC playoffs- Tampa is done- lost a starting safety, a starting Rt Off Tackle, and they just really weren't that good to begin with. I don't see them making the playoffs. If they do, it probably bodes well for us. Probably means they beat Atlanta. But, I don't see them being better than 9-7 - maybe...possibly 10-6, but I doubt it.. They already have 4 losses. If they make the playoffs it would be in a tie breaker with Chicago or Green Bay. I don't see that happening, but, again, if it does it probably means they beat Atllanta.
I am predicting Phila will be the last to fall and miss the playoffs because I see them losing @ NY with 2 games left and then they play Minn and Dallas to end the season and these two teams have nothing to lose. It will be Favre's last game vs. Phila and next to last of his career. They will do anything to win even though it's just for pride. Dallas ripped Phila 2x last year and the last game of the season, they will love being spoilers. They hate the Eagles, they have a coach they are rallying around, and they are playing for next year. Did I say they hate the Eagles? They have to at least split with the Eagles- if they don't they will take 3 Phila players minimum to the IR in very physical contests. . They will know they are spoilers and Vick, with a shaky offensive line and cold, wet windy Phila weather will not be able to execute the 60 yd explosive plays that puts the Eagle on the next tier. When Minn visits Phila, AP will churn it out for the Vikings and even though Favre will throw 2 ints he will throw 2 TDs as well and the Eagles will sit the playoffs out. Remember, Favre is used to the cold weather of Green Bay, Vick is used to a dome and a prison cell. Oh, and he played at Virginia Tech. I see him struggling in NY and Phila in December and January unless the have dome conditions.
The Giants, on the basis of their defense, will win 3 or 4 out of their last 5 ( wins vs Phil, Wash, Wash,- maybe Minn) they will finish 10-6 or 11-5. They are built for cold northeast weather. Not flashy, but they can grind.
Seattle- will make the playoffs as # 4 seed. They are in a dogfight vs. St Louis. I see Seattle upsetting Atlanta in Seattle. Atlanta is a better team but they also have 3 away games in a row. See below... St Louis is not a playoff team but thy will be competitive and have a good future. Seattle is not a playoff team either but they are desperate and just talented enough- they have their moments. They are much better at home.
Atlanta will get worn down by Carolina and Tampa- maybe Atlanta will win, but the two games on the road will exact a big toll on them. So, they will either split in their games vs Carolina and Tampa, or win both. Either way, by the time they travel across the country to Seattle for their third road game in a row, they will be spent and will lose on the left coast and then come home and get spanked by a superior Saints team who will exact revenge for a bogus loss at home earlier in the season. The combination of two physical divisional contests and then to cap it off playing on the other side of the country, this will be a big factor. We profit from that scenario.
Chicago and Green Bay will finish 10-6 or 11-5 - not sure about specifics there- could be a tie, but both will make the playoffs. I don't see either team as phenomenal, but both are good- especially defensively and at home and both ar bonfide playoff teams. I will be shocked if either team misses the playoffs.
Saints will finish 12-4. First seed in NFC with a bye. They will either lose to Cinn or Baltimore- probably Baltimore, but win the rest. Their superior conference record after their divisional record being tied to the Falcons, will put them in the driver's seat.
By the way, Eagles could lose Thurs vs. Houston - their weak defensive secondary has been exposed and coaches will have learned how to beat the Eagles- run in Assante Samuel's direction (if he plays) , if not , pick apart any of the other 3-4-5 defensive secondary players with accurate passes. If Samuel doesn't play,the Eagles have no hope. With Hobbs gone for the season and no Samuel, they need 7 sacks to win. If Samuel plays, he could be partially hobbled also. Schwab has to just weather the storm as far as blitzes are concerned, because there will be a minimum of defensive secondary and they are inexperienced. He will have the opportunity to pivk them apart. Andre Johnson should have a field day. Foster is a beast with 1247 yds and 12 TDs.
To simplify, the Saints just have to take care of business for the next 5 weeks. I hope my predictions are wrong- I hope the Saints win all 5, not just 4!! That's my story and I'm sticking to it!!