The Seahawks (11-3) have posted another season win with quarterback Russell Wilson and are heading to the NFC playoffs for the second consecutive year. After the 49ers’ weekend, the Seahawks are temporarily in seed no. 5, but can jump back to No. 1 in Week 17 with a win over the Cardinals on Sunday.
Seattle, of course, hosts San Francisco in this season finale.
Below are all the scenarios for the Seahawks in the NFL playoffs, including NFC top seed, division title and wild card based on weeks 16 and 17 results.
MORE: Scheduling of AFC, NFC playoff matches
How the Seahawks can hook the first number of seeds
If the Seahawks win against the Cardinals and 49ers at home, they will be 13-3. That would make the division champions, and the 49ers would settle for the wild card.
The Seahawks will be the No. 1 seed over the NFC North-leading Packers and the NFC South-winning Saints because they have the edge over Green Bay through a tiebreaker of common games and, at present, New Orleans is one half game behind the other two in conference calendar (8-3). If all three teams finish 2-0 and end up 13-3, there will be no change in the status quo.
But if it’s only the Seahawks and the Saints who win out and the Packers don’t, then the Seahawks will fall to No. 2 because they lost to the Saints. The Packers (in the Vikings, in the Lions) and in the Saints (in the Titans, in the Panthers) should go 1-1 at the worst given the remaining schedule.
Although the Seahawks go 1-1, losing to the Cardinals but beating the 49ers, they will still be a division championship, either from a game or a heads-to-head tiebreaker, at only 12-4. Should the Packers and Saints also finish 12-4, the Seahawks will get the No. 1 seed.
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How Seahawks Can Shed Seeds No. 2 or 3
Seahawks will get seed no. 2 if they win the NFC West in either 13-3 or 12-4 and are even with the Saints only and not with the Packers.
Seattle would fall to No. 3 if it went 1-1 to win the NFC West, with both Green Bay and New Orleans needing to win out to be 13-3 in every single game.
MORE: Playoff scenarios for Week 16
How Seahawks Can Shed Seeds No. 5 or 6
The Seahawks can fall here in one of two ways – to lose, or to beat the Cardinals but to lose to the 49ers. Going 0-2 and falling to 11-5 will lose two games to the 49ers. Going 1-1 to finish 12-4 will lose a split from a complete game or a heads-to-head tiebreaker.
Should the Seahawks not win the division at 11-5, the Vikings, who lost to them, could push them to No. 6 if they win at 12-4 as the top wild card, assuming the Packers beat the Lions Week 17 to get the NFC North still.
If the Seahawks do not win the division at 12-4, it will be the seed no. 5 No matter what. They have the heads-to-head tiebreaker over the Vikings when Minnesota wins and pushes Green Bay into seed no. 6.