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NFC Playoff Picture: Vikings Status After Week 16

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings roster took more hits Tuesday, when Vikings Head Coach Kevin O'Connell confirmed season-ending injuries to tight end T.J. Hockenson (torn ACL and MCL) and outside linebacker D.J. Wonnum (quadriceps) occurred Sunday against the Lions.

Minnesota (7-8) is amidst its second 1-4 showing in a five-game span of 2023 and will host Green Bay (7-8) on Sunday Night Football in Week 17.

Since the NFL expanded the playoffs in 2020 to include seven teams in each conference, No. 2 seeds will now play on Wild Card Weekend and host No. 7 seeds.

Here's a look at the current NFC playoff picture — with conference standings and a status update — as we head into Week 17.

1. San Francisco 49ers (11-4)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Commanders (4-11)

1/7/24 Rams (8-7)

Status: The 49ers had their six-game win streak snapped by the Ravens to conclude Week 16. Brock Purdy ended four of his first seven possessions with interceptions by Baltimore (12-3).

2. Philadelphia Eagles (11-4)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 Cardinals (3-12)

1/7/24 @ Giants (5-10)

Status: According to OptaSTATS, the Eagles became the first team in NFL history to fumble four or more times, have nine or more penalties accepted, allow a 65-plus-yard pick-6 and a 65-plus-yard touchdown pass in the same game. Despite all that, Philadelphia toppled the New York Giants 33-25.

3. Detroit Lions (11-4)

Remaining Schedule

12/30 @ Cowboys (10-5)

1/7/24 Vikings (7-8)

Status: The Lions secured the NFC North (established 2002) for the first time in franchise history and won a division crown for the first time since 1993. Detroit could still improve its standing by winning out if other teams falter down the stretch.

4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-7)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 Saints (7-8)

1/7/24 @ Panthers (2-13)

Status: Tampa Bay cruised against Jacksonville and can win the NFC South with a win. If the Bucs and Saints became the first tie of the season, then an Atlanta loss would also wrap the division in pirate pewter.

5. Dallas Cowboys (10-5)

Remaining Schedule

12/30 Lions (11-4)

1/7/24 @ Commanders (4-11)

Status: The Cowboys followed a five-game win streak with consecutive road losses at Buffalo and Miami. Dallas (7-0 at AT&T Stadium this season) will try to finish as the only team to not lose at least one home game this season.

6. Los Angeles Rams (8-7)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Giants (5-10)

1/7/24 @ 49ers (11-4)

Status: The Rams have won five of six games and can clinch a playoff berth with a win and a loss by the Seahawks, or a win and a tie by the Vikings and Packers.

7. Seattle Seahawks (8-7)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 Steelers (8-7)

1/7/24 @ Cardinals (3-12)

Status: Back-to-back comebacks — led by Drew Lock against the Eagles and Geno Smith at the Titans — completed in the final minutes of each game have resulted in the opportunity for the Seahawks to clinch a playoff berth with a win and tie by the Vikings and Packers.

8. Minnesota Vikings (7-8)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 Packers (7-8)

1/7/24 @ Lions (11-4)

Status: The Vikings fell to 2-5 in home games this season. The team's turnover margin in those five losses is minus-10 — the worst form of "Minnesota Nice." The Vikings are plus-4 in their two wins at U.S. Bank Stadium.

9. Atlanta Falcons (7-8)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Bears (6-9)

1/7/24 @ Saints (7-8)

Status: The Falcons bounced back from a loss to the Panthers by topping the Colts 29-10.

10. Green Bay Packers (7-8)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Vikings (7-8)

1/7/24 Bears (6-9)

Status: Green Bay improved to 3-5 on the road this season with a tiebreaking field goal, despite a 30-16 lead early in the fourth quarter evaporating at Carolina.

11. New Orleans Saints (7-8)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Buccaneers (8-7)

1/7/24 Falcons (7-8)

Status: The Saints lost at home to the Bucs 26-9 in Week 4 but will try to make the determination for the NFC South last until Week 18.

12. Chicago Bears (6-9)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 Falcons (7-8)

1/7/24 @ Packers (7-8)

Status: If not for losing late leads at Detroit in Week 11 and at Cleveland in Week 15, Chicago would be riding a six-game win streak and in better position for a postseason berth. Instead, the Bears are in must-win territory the rest of the way (and need multiple dominoes to fall).

13. New York Giants (5-10)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 Rams (8-7)

1/7/24 Eagles (11-4)

Status: The Giants were eliminated from making it back to the postseason with Monday's loss at the Eagles. New York can play a spoiler role in each of the next two weeks.

14. Washington Commanders (4-11)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 49ers (11-4)

1/7/24 Cowboys (10-5)

Status: The Commanders rallied from a 20-point deficit the Jets built midway through the second quarter and led at the 2-minute mark before allowing the winning field goal in a 30-27 loss, Washington's sixth consecutive defeat.

15. Arizona Cardinals (3-12)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Eagles (11-4)

1/7/24 Seahawks (8-7)

Status: The Cardinals can impact the playoff field and standings in each of the next two weeks.

16. Carolina Panthers (2-13)

Remaining Schedule

12/31 @ Jaguars (8-7)

1/7/24 Buccaneers (8-7)

Status: Carolina is 0-8 on the road this season.