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Falcons do Saints a solid by beating 49ers, Bears come up just short against Packers

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Thanks, Atlanta. We can go back to cheering against you now.

Atlanta Falcons v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The New Orleans Saints entered Week 15 with the their playoff-seeding fate outside of their control. Even if the Saints won their remaining three games, that would not, by itself, determine which seed the Saints would end up in the NFC.

While the Saints have yet to play this week and instead play tomorrow night against the Indianapolis Colts on Monday Night Football, there was still intriguing football on Sunday.

In the noon slate of games, the Green Bay Packers hosted the Chicago Bears, where a loss by Green Bay would go a long way for helping the Saints secure a first round bye. The Packers pulled ahead with an early lead, but the Bears made a game of it late, a touchdown and two point conversion away from securing overtime. Instead of a Hail Mary on the final play, the Bears opted for a hook-and-lateral type play which ended up pulling the Bears all the way down to inside the ten yard line as time expired.

It was a losable game for the Packers, but unfortunately for New Orleans, the Packers wound up with the win. All eyes will be on next week’s game when the Packers travel to Minnesota to face the division rival Vikings.

While the Packers game didn’t end up how Saints fans would have hoped, the 49ers game did.

The 49ers lost on the final sequence to the Atlanta Falcons, with a last second touchdown to Julio Jones upheld after review.

The loss by the 49ers (and win by the Falcons) was good for the Saints in multiple ways:

Combe the 49ers loss with the Seattle Seahawks’ 30-24 win over the Carolina Panthers, and the 49ers went from the NFC’s one seed Sunday morning to the fifth seed by Sunday night.

As it stands now, a win by the Saints Monday Night would help increase the chances the Saints wind up with at least the two seed in the NFC and a first round bye.

In any event, there’s no need to get ahead of ourselves. Focus on one game at a time, and let’s take care of business tomorrow night.