We’ll start with the obvious: The Packers have issues of their own to deal with before they can think about the NFL playoff picture. They’re 0-6 on the road this season. At 4-6-1 overall going into Week 13, they’re third in a division that seemed winnable just a few weeks ago.Aaron Rodgers, the star quarterback who has had a strong season but also has been a culprit at times and is not unsusceptible to criticism himself, might have understated Green Bay’s situation Sunday when he said, “We have to take care of our own business.” The other team for whom the Packers need to cheer is the Eagles … specifically in their two games against the Redskins. If Washington loses to Philly twice (which is possible given the injuries the ‘Skins are managing), its best possible record will be 9-7. That would propel Philadelphia to a minimum of seven wins, but its other three games come against Houston, Dallas and the LA Rams, all potential (if not probable) losses. The Packers also would need the Cowboys to hold on and win the NFC East, keeping the Eagles in the wild-card hunt.That scenario leaves the Panthers, currently 6-5, as the last team in the Packers’ way. But Carolina still has to play New Orleans, arguably the best team in football, twice in the last three weeks. Losses in those games alone would drop the Panthers to a best-case record of 9-7, and they’ve been shaky enough of late for one to think their games against the Browns, Bucs and Falcons are far from locks.Should those wild-card contenders take those projected losses, and, again, should Green Bay win out, the Packers would take the No. 6 seed. That pesky tie they had with the Vikings in Week 2 would help both teams make the postseason. The Packers need to win all five of their remaining games — vs. Cardinals, vs. Falcons, at Bears, at Jets, vs. Lions — to finish 9-6-1. Which brings us to another line from Rodgers regarding Green Bay’s playoff chances: “We’re gonna need some help.”MORE: Updated NFL playoff pictureThe bad news for the Packers in the NFC wild-card picture is the fact that they lose head-to-head tiebreakers to the Vikings, Redskins and Seahawks, all of whom are ahead of Green Bay in the standings. The Packers also can reach a maximum of just six conference wins; each of the other wild-card contenders have the potential to reach more, mathematically.The good news for the Packers — again, only if they win out and reach 9-6-1 — is there’s at least one logical scenario in which four of the other five NFC wild-card hopefuls finish 9-7.Ironically, it requires Green Bay cheering for Minnesota in a couple key games, among other results.The Vikings’ toughest games left are against the Patriots, Seahawks and Bears. If the Vikings beat the Seahawks, and if Seattle also loses to AFC power Kansas City a couple weeks later, the Seahawks’ best possible record will be 9-7. Let’s say Minnesota drops those games against New England and Chicago; if it wins the other two against Miami and Detroit, it would finish at 9-6-1, ahead of Green Bay with the head-to-head tiebreaker.
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