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NFL playoff picture: What does Eagles-Cowboys mean for NFC standings

The Eagles face the Cowboys in Arlington, Texas on Saturday. We break down what the game means for the NFL playoff picture.

A Philadelphia Eagles defender breaks up a pass intended for Dallas Cowboys Wide Receiver Michael Gallup (13) during the second half of the National Football League game between the Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles on October 16,2022, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Saturday update: The Cowboys win a wild game over the Eagles, which locks them into the highest possible wild card position. Dallas is still alive for the division but will need Philadelphia to lose out. The Cowboys also have to win out in that scenario.

The Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys face off in a Week 16 matchup that has zig-zagged in importance over the past week. After the Cowboys lost to the Jaguars on Sunday, it appeared this game would have little value. Then we learned Jalen Hurts was dealing with a shoulder injury and he might miss some or all of the remaining three weeks of the season.

Now, it’s unclear how much time he’ll miss, but Gardner Minshew will start until Hurts is able to return. For the time-being, the Eagles come into this game as a five-point underdog at DraftKings Sportsbook.

Eagles playoff picture

Philadelphia is in first place with a three-game lead on Dallas in the division and a two-game lead on Minnesota for the No. 1 seed. The Eagles can clinch the division and the No. 1 seed with a win. If they lose this week, they would be able to clinch the division with a win or tie or a Cowboys loss or tie in any of the two remaining weeks. Similarly, they would be able to clinch the No. 1 seed with a win or tie or a Vikings loss or tie in any of the two remaining weeks.

Cowboys playoff picture

Dallas is in fifth place overall in the conference. They need a win in any of the three remaining weeks or a Giants loss in any of the three remaining weeks to clinch that highest wild card position. If they want to win the NFC East, they need to win out and have the Eagles lose out.

Tiebreaker implications

This won’t implicate tiebreakers for either team.