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The Chicago Bears' win over the Lions officially eliminated the Giants and forced the Vikings to beat the Packers to claim the No. 6 seed in the NFC.
The NFC playoff picture is coming into clearer focus after Sunday's early games. The final Wild Card spot will be taken by either the Bears or Vikings. Chicago took care of business on the road against Detroit, setting up a showdown between the Packers and Vikings that is full of playoff implications.
Here are the latest playoff updates from the early games in the NFC:
The Bears kept their postseason hopes alive early Sunday afternoon, and now they'll have to wait and watch two division rivals play in Minnesota. If the Packers knock off the Vikings, Chicago will claim the No. 6 seed in the NFC.
Chicago's win knocked both the Giants and Redskins out of NFC Wild Card contention. The Redskins, of course, still have a shot to make the playoffs as NFC East champs with a win over the Cowboys on Sunday Night.
The Giants took care of business in the Meadowlands, blowing out the Eagles early and cruising to a 42-7 win. But after three straight losses, it was too little, too late for Tom Coughlin's club. The Bears' win in Detroit officially eliminated the Giants from the race for the No. 6 seed.
The Falcons were locked into the No. 1 seed, and Sunday's 22-17 loss to the Buccaneers was inconsequential.
And here's what's left on the line this afternoon in the late games:
The Packers still control their own destiny and can play their way into a first-round bye with a win over the Vikings on Sunday afternoon.
The Niners need to beat the Cardinals at home and hope the Vikings can knock off the Packers at home in order to move back into the No. 2 seed. A Niners loss and Seahawks win would drop Jim Harbaugh's club all the way to the Wild Card spot and No. 5 seed.
Washington Redskins / Dallas Cowboys
The Redskins face the Cowboys in an NFC East winner-take-all game Sunday Night at FedEx Field. The Redskins still had an outside shot to get the No. 6 seed if they lost to Dallas, but Chicago's win removes that possibility.
The Seahawks still have a chance to clinch the NFC West title. If the 49ers lose to the Cardinals, and the Seahawks beat the Rams, Seattle would pull off the final week switch atop the NFC West standings. If the Niners beat the Cardinals, Seattle will stay in the No. 5 spot.
The Vikings are in with a win over the Packers, claiming the No. 6 seed and eliminating the Bears ... who will be intently watching from Detroit.