Week 12 NFL Playoff Picture: Vikings Have a New Matchup

Questions Answered: Vikings Path Forward, Dalvin Tomlinson, Darrisaw Out
Nov 20, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Dallas Cowboys linebacker Micah Parsons (11) sacks Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) and forces a fumble during the first quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

With the regular season nearly two-thirds of the way through, the playoff picture is becoming clearer as each week passes. In the Week 12 NFL playoff picture, the Minnesota Vikings have a new matchup in the Wild Card round. Find out who that is and more down below.

NFC

Reaction to Vikings Loss vs. Cowboys
Nov 20, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) throws over Minnesota Vikings linebacker Danielle Hunter (99) during the third quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Seeds

  1. Philadelphia Eagles (9-1)
  2. Minnesota Vikings (8-2)
  3. San Francisco 49ers (6-4)— head-to-head tiebreaker over SEA
  4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-5)
  5. Dallas Cowboys (7-3)— head-to-head tiebreaker over NYG
  6. New York Giants (7-3)
  7. Seattle Seahawks (6-4)

  1. Washington Commanders (6-5)
  2. Atlanta Falcons (5-6)
  3. Detroit Lions (4-6)
  4. Arizona Cardinals (4-7)
  5. Green Bay Packers (4-7)
  6. New Orleans Saints (4-7)
  7. Los Angeles Rams (3-7)
  8. Carolina Panthers (3-8)
  9. Chicago Bears (3-8)

Wild Card Matchups

  • (7) Seattle Seahawks @ (2) Minnesota Vikings
  • (6) New York Giants @ (3) San Francisco 49ers
  • (5) Dallas Cowboys @ (4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • (1) Philadelphia Eagles on bye

Notes

  • If the seeding lands this way, it may be the best-case scenario for the Vikings. Landing a matchup against the Seahawks rather than 49ers is far preferable, and they keep Philly and Dallas on opposite sides of the bracket.
  • We get to see the Skip Bayless Bowl as Tom Brady’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the Dallas Cowboys.
  • The Commanders continue to creep closer to that No. 7 seed.
  • Overall, this is probably the kindest bracket that the Vikings could possibly hope for going into the playoffs. Will it actually happen, though?
  • Against all odds, the Lions have moved into the top-10 in the NFC.

AFC

Nov 20, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) is pressured by Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Morgan Fox (56) in the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Seeds

  1. Kansas City Chiefs (8-2)
  2. Miami Dolphins (7-3)— head-to-head tiebreaker over BUF, TEN; in-conference record tiebreaker over BAL
  3. Tennessee Titans (7-3)
  4. Baltimore Ravens (7-3)
  5. Buffalo Bills (7-3)
  6. New England Patriots (6-4)— head-to-head tiebreaker over NYJ, in-conference record tiebreaker over CIN
  7. Cincinnati Bengals (6-4)— head-to-head tiebreaker over NYJ

  1. New York Jets (6-4)
  2. Los Angeles Chargers (5-5)
  3. Indianapolis Colts (4-6-1)
  4. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7)
  5. Las Vegas Raiders (3-7)
  6. Cleveland Browns (3-7)
  7. Denver Broncos (3-7)
  8. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-7)
  9. Houston Texans (1-8-1)

Wild Card Matchups

  • (7) Cincinnati Bengals @ (2) Miami Dolphins
  • (6) New England Patriots @ (3) Tennessee Titans
  • (5) Buffalo Bills @ (4) Baltimore Ravens
  • (1) Kansas City Chiefs on bye

Notes

  • We get a battle between two top-five picks in the 2020 NFL Draft when Joe Burrow takes on Tua Tagovailoa in Miami.
  • Lamar Jackson vs. Josh Allen would be an electric matchup in the Wild Card.
  • The Jets inability to win these close games is beginning to hurt them, and now for the first time this year, they find themselves on the outside looking in.
  • Every team from 2-7 could rise or fall on any given week, so every game from here on out is important.
  • A divisional round consisting of Kansas City vs. BAL/BUF and Miami vs. Tennessee is a slate of games that I am absolutely rooting for moving forward. Let’s make it happen.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. He also earned minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys marathon training, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his opinions, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.