NFL Playoff Picture: How the Detroit Lions can still clinch a spot

Lions finish season against Bengals, Packers

The Detroit Lions are not done just yet.

The 8-6 Detroit Lions are currently on the outside looking in for the NFL playoff picture, but they're not dead in the water.

Sitting in the No. 7 seed, the Lions are being trailed by the Seahawks and Cowboys right now. The Lions have an edge over Seattle based on conference record. 

Unfortunately for the Lions, the Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers are in front of them, in the No. 5 and 6 seeds - two teams the Lions have lost to this year.

The Atlanta Falcons play tonight (Monday), but even if they lose and drop to 8-6, they will still own the No. 6 seed because of the tiebreaker with the Lions. 

So, how do the Lions sneak into the playoffs?

The best chance for the Lions to grab a wild card spot would be for Atlanta to lose out and for the Lions to win out. 

The Panthers now have 10 wins on the season, which means the only way the Lions could get in over Carolina would be a three-way tie, which is not likely.

So, if Atlanta loses their final two games and the Lions win their final two games - Detroit is in. Otherwise, it's almost impossible.

Atlanta plays the Buccaneers tonight, but they will close the season against the Saints and Panthers - two very good teams.

If Atlanta loses tonight - the Lions chances will rise a bit, but they'd still need to win and hope the Falcons lose.

Detroit on the other hand will close the season against a weak Bengals team and the Packers, who just got Aaron Rodgers back.


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