What if we told you the Philadelphia Eagles, after losing a tough game to the Dallas Cowboys on Christmas Eve, could clinch the NFC East without even lifting a finger? Well, that’s the scenario.
If you’ve been listening to Cowboys fans for a day or so and you didn’t know any better, you might be suckered into thinking they had already won the Super Bowl. Then again, that’s how they operate. They’re the regular-season kings, always concentrating more on what’s going on in Philly than on their own team.
Still, after an emotional battle between Philly and Dallas, nothing has changed. The Birds are still the NFC’s top-seeded team, and a single win in their remaining pair of games (or a single loss by the Cowboys in their final two games), will assure the Birds of the NFC East’s crown.
One more win by the Eagles or losses by the Minnesota Vikings and San Francisco 49ers would secure home-field advantage in the playoffs.
Philly holds the tie-breaker over the Vikes thanks to an early-season head-to-head win. If Philly wins out and Minnesota and the Niners both win out, that gives the Birds the top seed in the NFC as well.
Dallas is favored by 9.5 points on the road versus the Tennessee Titans in Week 17. That game is the first of the coming week’s slate and if the Cowboys falter, which is always a possibility, they’ll give the Birds a late Christmas present.
More Eagles news: Lane Johnson will undergo an MRI on Monday.
As mentioned earlier, Philadelphia’s most recent loss didn’t shift the balance of power in the NFC East or affect their postseason positioning, but it was costly. Jordan Davis, Avonte Maddox, and Lane Johnson all left the field with injuries. Can you imagine the fury everyone would be experiencing right now had Jalen Hurts played and injured himself further?
Fingers were crossed all over Eagles Nation that Jordan, Avonte, and Lane were okay. ESPN’s Tim McManus reported that Johnson, the game’s best right tackle, was scheduled for an MRI on Monday. His injury was to the groin/abdomen area. We have since learned that he’ll miss the final two games of the season. It’s unfortunate, but it isn’t much of a surprise either.
Philly will have to employ the next-man-up mantra again. Fingers are crossed around Eagles Nation that Lane will return by the postseason.