More Sports:

December 15, 2019

Week 15 non-Eagles Sunday rooting guide

With three games left to play, somehow, the Philadelphia Eagles are in an excellent position to reap the rewards of a Dallas Cowboys meltdown, and win the atrocious NFC East. As always, we take a look at the Birds' rooting interests around the league, aside from their own game. Ideal winners are bolded.

The NFC East crown

Rams at Cowboys: Obviously, as always, the Eagles would be beneficiaries of a Cowboys loss on Sunday, but in a way, this is something of a "house money" type of game.

Realistically, the Eagles should be expected to run the table the rest of the season to win the division. If they do that, they will clinch the NFC East, needing no other help from the Cowboys. However, a scenario exists in which the Eagles would actually clinch the division and be able to rest their starters Week 17.

Let's take a look at the four Eagles-Cowboys win-loss scenarios this week:

  1. Cowboys win, Eagles lose: In this event, the Eagles are basically cooked. They'd have to beat the Cowboys Week 16, and then the Giants Week 17. The Cowboys would have to lose Week 17 to Washington, in addition to their Week 16 loss to the Eagles.
  2. Cowboys lose, Eagles lose: This scenario doesn't change the odds much, as the Eagles would still clinch the division with wins over the Cowboys and Giants Weeks 16 and 17. Of course, should the Eagles lose to the woeful, nothing-to-play-for Washington team Week 15, nobody is going to want to hear Doug Pederson say once again that the team "controls its own destiny."
  3. Cowboys win, Eagles win: Again, this scenario doesn't change the odds much, as the Eagles would still clinch the division with wins over the Cowboys and Giants Weeks 16 and 17.
  4. Cowboys lose, Eagles win: In this event, the Eagles would head into Week 16 with a chance to clinch the division a week early with a win over the Cowboys at home. 

Got it? Cool. The rest of this post is a waste of your time, but let's go ahead and waste it anyway.

Draft positioning

Should the Eagles fail to win the division, the consolation prize would be a higher draft pick. If the season were to end before Sunday's slate of games, the Eagles would be picking 13th. Here's a look at the draft order, via our good friends at Tankathon


It is best for the Eagles if the teams closest to them in the draft order, namely the teams with 5 or 6 wins, win their remaining games. As such, the following outcomes are ideal:

  1. Buccaneers at Lions
  2. Broncos at Chiefs
  3. Seahawks at Panthers
  4. Jaguars at Raiders
  5. Browns at Cardinals
  6. Vikings at Chargers
  7. Falcons at 49ers
  8. Colts at Saints

And then it's also better for the Steelers to beat the Bills, for "strength of schedule" draft order tie-breaking purposes, which I'll skip detailing once again this week.

Draft positioning pettiness

Ideally the Giants won't end up with either the No. 1 or No. 2 overall pick. If they do, you can just start printing Chase Young jerseys now. The following games affect the Giants' draft position:

  1. Patri*ts at Bengals
  2. Dolphins at Giants

Ideal playoff opponents

If the Eagles win the division, they will play either the Seahawks, 49ers, Vikings, Packers, or Rams, in that order of likelihood, in the wildcard round.

Previously, we mapped out the Eagles' ideal first-round opponents, in order, of that group of teams. But really, is it even worth burning calories worrying about all of that? 

Ultimately, if the Eagles make the playoffs and they get Carson Wentz a little taste of playoff action, then hey, great. That'll serve him well in subsequent seasons, even with a loss. And hell, if the Eagles can somehow find a way to win a playoff game, even better, I guess, as long as that doesn't preclude the team from making necessary changes to the coaching staff. But we all realize that this team, with its glaring holes littered across the roster, has no shot of actually winning a Super Bowl, right? 

So if they win the division, the chips will just fall where they may, in my view, and there's little sense at this point in even rooting for a specific opponent.

Follow Jimmy & PhillyVoice on Twitter: @JimmyKempski | @thePhillyVoice

Like us on Facebook: PhillyVoice Sports

Add Jimmy's RSS feed to your feed reader