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The NFC South After Week 4: Into the Win Column

Three teams have a cluster of identical records.

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into Week 4, the Atlanta Falcons were in first place in the division with a 2-1 record. The Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers were both 1-2, and the New Orleans Saints were winless and in last place at 0-3.

So what happened in Week 4?

As expected, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost to the defending Champion Denver Broncos to drop to 1-3. The New Orleans Saints won (it wasn't the prettiest of wins, but it got the job done) their first game of the season to improve to 1-3. In the NFC South showdown between the Carolina Panthers and Atlanta Falcons, it was actually the least desirable outcome, but the Falcons won to improve to 3-1, dropping the Carolina Panthers to 1-3.

That means the Atlanta Falcons remain in first place at 3-1. The Carolina Panthers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and New Orleans Saints are all tied in second place (notwithstanding tie-breakers) with a record of 1-3. That means the Saints would be two games out of first place. After an 0-3 start to the season, the New Orleans Saints are actually in a good place heading into their early Week 5 Bye.

In Week 5, the Atlanta Falcons travel to Mile High to play the Denver Broncos. The Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers play each other in Carolina. The Broncos lost QB Trevor Siemian for the game against the Bucs, with rookie Paxton Lynch replacing the fellow rookie. If Paxton and Co. are able beat the Atlanta Falcons, they would then drop to 3-2. One of the Panthers or Bucs will win their game, with one improving to 2-3 and the other falling to 1-4.

That means the Saints could actually gain ground in a way. They might drop to 3rd place, but would then be only 1.5 games out of first, with a game against the likely 2nd place Panthers coming next.

Now let's get healthy.