Season Outlook

I had us reasonably at 6-10. :shrug: I don't think that we're going 0-8 in the second half of the season. It's all lagniappe at this point as the Payton honeymoon period gets an extension. Barring any crucial injuries, I can see us around 11-5 with possible division implications with the Panthers in Week #17 (assuming they can make a strong, second half run). If so, then Week #17 might actually be worth something to someone.

We're obviously in position to make a run for wildcard weekend (with a shot at taking the division). Atlanta, at 5-3, is the only non-division leader with a winning record in the NFC right now. They're 1.5 games back (technically) with a game still to play against us. Assuming the Giants and Bears win their respective divisions, here are the teams we're battling with in the wildcard race:

Without getting deep into common opposition, let's look at the rest:

Dallas 4-4 (2 games back)
We still have to play them. We are currently 5-1 in conference play; they are 2-3.

Philly 4-4 (3 games back due to Saints victory)
We beat them head-to-head and own the two team tiebreaker with them. They are 3-3 in the NFC

Washington 3-5 (3 games back)
We still have to play them. They are 1-3 in the NFC.

Minnesota 4-4 (2 games back)
4-2 in the NFC

Green Bay 3-5 (4 games back due to Saints victory)
We already beat them. They are 2-4 in the NFC.

Carolina 4-4 (2 games back)
We lost to them but still have a game to play against them where we could even the score. They are 2-1 in the division and still have to play all 3 teams again, while we're 3-1 and only have to play the Falcons and Panthers.

St. Louis 4-4 (2 games back)
3-2 in the NFC.

San Francisco 3-5 (3 games back)
2-3 in the NFC, and we still have to play them.

If nothing else, we're in position for a run to the playoffs. We still control our own destiny (by at least 2 games over every opponent besides the Falcons and Panthers) as far as the division goes. Along with the Giants, we also control our own destiny as far as getting a bye week (by virtue of the fact we still have to play one another - assumes tied record and each division winners).

We've certainly got something to build on.

TPS