The Cardinals Playoff Picture Heading into Week 15

The Arizona Cardinals have gotten back on track, winning their latest game against the then NFC-East leading Giants last Sunday. Other games around the league helped the Cardinals cause as well with the Vikings losing to Tampa Bay and the 49ers losing to the Washington Football Team. As the season comes to a close, the playoff picture will become more and more clear. Until then, Kazual Sportz is here to breakdown the numerous possibilities leading up to the playoffs.

The Most Likely Scenario

See the Breakdown on ESPN’s Playoff Machine HERE

In this scenario, I predict that the Cardinals win two of their remaining three games and ultimately secure a playoff birth against the New Orleans Saints. This scenario is ONLY possible if the Minnesota Vikings lose to the previously mentioned Saints on the road. Seeing as the Vikings have to play the “likely out” Bears and Lions, the Saints game is the crucial turning point. Obviously, if the Cardinals win their remaining three games, this take becomes moot.

An Unexpected Finish

See the Breakdown on ESPN’s Playoff Machine HERE

Their is still a dark house in this race that we have counted out for the last 7 weeks. That is the Chicago Bears. If they can muster up 3 straight wins against Minnesota, Jacksonville, and the Green Bay Packers (Likely, due to Rodgers being rested in the game), they can slip past Minnesota and take the Cardinals playoff spot with a 9-7 record. The only way the Cardinals overcome that, is again by winning their remaining three games.

Disaster Strikes

See the Breakdown on ESPN’s Playoff Machine HERE

To me, this is the most unlikely of scenarios. But the NFC ends up with not one, but TWO 8-8 teams in the playoffs. Since we are rooting for the Red Birds here, lets assume that the Cardinals sneak into the Playoffs at 8-8. Here’s how it happens.

  • Week 15: Vikings beat the Bears, Cardinals lose to the Eagles
  • Week 16: Vikings lose to Saints, Cardinals beat San Francisco, Bears beat Jacksonville
  • Week 17: Vikings lose to Lions, Cardinals lose to the Rams, Bears lose to the Packers

The ONLY way the Cardinals at 8-8 make the playoffs is if the Vikings & Bears end with 7-9 each.

One Game at a Time

Fear not, Red Sea. A lot can happen in these three weeks but the outlook still appears most favorable for the Cardinals. As long as the Cardinals can continue to build and regain the magic that they had in the middle of the season, a playoff birth should be within their grasp.

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