By Dayna O’Gorman // @DaynaOG
With just three games remaining in the season, there are already a handful of divisions that have been claimed. However with the NFC West, much like it has the last few seasons, it will come down to those last few games before a winner can be claimed. For the most competitive division in football, it could be a photo finish at the end.
We all know that there could be 3 NFC West teams that make the playoffs, but claiming the division could be a harder chore. With the Los Angeles Rams and the Seattle Seahawks both sitting at 9-4, the Rams hold the first place spot due to their 23-16 win over the Seahawks in Week 10. These teams will meet again in week 15. This game could, and most likely will end up deciding the division.
Both teams have 2 divisional games left, but the third game looks to be an easier matchup for the Rams. While the Seahawks play the Washington Football Team, who have one of the best defenses in the league and just beat the San Francisco 49ers 23-15, the Rams face the New York Jets. The Jets have yet to win a game, and just had their worst game of the season against Seattle, with the Seahawks winning 40-3.
If the season ended today… 👀 pic.twitter.com/RmQXT7YmHc
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) December 14, 2020
So it will come down to the divisional games to determine the winner of the NFC West. This is where the other two teams could play spoiler and claim their spot in the playoffs.
The Arizona Cardinals are currently 7-6, are in the 7th playoff spot, and have been playing quite well all season. They split their games against the Seahawks and beat the 49ers in the first week of the season. This season will end with two divisional games and a game against the Philadelphia Eagles. If they can win 2 of the 3 games, that leaves them at 9-7 and a very good chance at the playoffs. However, if they can win all 3, which would include a win against Los Angeles, that could help the Seahawks move to the top of the division and almost secure them a playoff bid.
San Francisco is sitting at 5-8 so far on the season. This is a huge disappointment for a team that made it to the Super Bowl last year. However, with injuries plaguing this team all season, it isn’t a huge surprise they have struggled. So what can San Francisco do in the division? Well, quite frankly, they could ruin it for Seattle.
We all know the history between the 49ers and Seahawks. It’s a rivalry that has been very fun to watch over the years. Earlier this season Seattle beat San Francisco 37-27, but with the two teams playing in the last game of the season, San Francisco will have nothing to lose and could go all in to beat their rival.
San Francisco could get a boost in next week’s game as they play the Dallas Cowboys, who have also struggled with injuries all season. If they get the win and some of their players back, the 49ers could make some trouble for the rest of their division.
So what we are looking at is this. If both the Rams and Seattle win next week and remain tied at 10-4 going into their game in Week 16, all the cards are on the table for the division. Then whoever comes out on top of that game will have to win their Week 17 match up to stay there.
The toughest division in football is going to be a lot of fun to watch over the next few weeks.
Follow Dayna on Twitter // @DaynaOG