Sam Bradford

NFC playoff picture is wide open

It's been a strange year. That much is obvious. The Giants are 0-6, the Steelers are 0-4, and the Green Bay Packers would be left out of the playoffs if the tournament started tonight.

While the AFC has seen its fair share of strange results, the NFC reigns as the current King of Odd. To start with, there are only six teams in the NFC that are currently above .500. In addition, the usually tough NFC East is laughably terrible. At 2-3, the Eagles and Cowboys currently lead the division, meaning the playoff door is still somewhat open for everyone in that division, even the New York Giants.

While the NFC hasn't exactly been synonymous with great football this year, it has equaled compelling television. The Falcons, who were once favored as a Super Bowl contender, are still looking for their second win of the season. Meanwhile, teams like the Rams are fighting to stay in the playoff picture despite bad starts.

Sure, there are still a couple of "elite" teams left in the NFC. The Saints are back to their former selves with the return of head coach Sean Payton, and the Seahawks are nearly unbeatable when playing at home. Even the Bears, who are a solid 4-2 on the year, are in prime position considering the state of the conference as a whole.

Because so many teams are so close in the standings, it's hard to imagine a scenario in which the closing weeks aren't full of dramatic finishes and an ever-changing playoff landscape.

If the current trend continues in the NFC, we'll be in for a wild ride towards the end of the season. There will be about three playoff spots that will be up for grabs, and we'll be seeing about ten teams competing for those spots, meaning this wacky season is just getting started.

Shane Clemons

About Shane Clemons

Shane Clemons came from humble beginnings creating his own Jaguars blog before moving on to SBNation as a featured writer for the Jaguars. He then moved to Bloguin where he briefly covered the AFC South before taking over Bloguin's Jaguars blog. Since the inception of This Given Sunday, Shane has served as an editor for the site, doing his best not to mess up a good thing.

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