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The NFC East may be the worst division in NFL history, but one of those four teams has to host a playoff game. And the Giants are the team with the clearest path to first place.
The 4-7 Giants are in first place right now, thanks to their head-to-head sweep of the 4-7 Washington Football Team, and that means the Giants are the only team that controls its path to the title.
Of course, for the Giants to control their destiny, they’d have to win out: Only if they go 9-7 can they be sure they’re going to win the NFC East. And given their five remaining opponents (Seahawks, Cardinals, Browns, Ravens, Cowboys), it’s highly unlikely the Giants will win out.
But it’s also unlikely that anyone else in the NFC East can win out. Washington is also 4-7 but has to play the Steelers, 49ers and Seahawks the next three games. Washington could easily fall to 4-10 before finishing with the Panthers and Eagles.
The Eagles are 3-7-1 and will also be underdogs in their next three games, against the Packers, Saints and Cardinals, before closing the season with the Cowboys and Football Team.
The Cowboys are in last place at 3-8 and get the Ravens, Bengals, 49ers, Eagles and Giants the rest of the way. Dallas is a game behind Washington and was swept by Washington, so the Cowboys will need to be two games better than Washington the rest of the way to overtake the Football Team in the NFC East.
The advanced stats at FootballOutsiders.com give the Giants a 40 percent chance of winning the NFC East, Washington a 30 percent chance, Philadelphia 19 percent and Dallas 10 percent. (Those stats assume the Giants’ offense will be a little worse this week, with Colt McCoy likely starting at quarterback for the injured Daniel Jones.) The Giants have to be considered the favorites right now in a division that someone has to win.
Giants are only NFC East team that controls its path to the division title originally appeared on Pro Football Talk