Seahawks will go on road, play NFC East champion Eagles in playoffs
After a tough 26-21 loss to the San Francisco 49ers that came down to the very end, the Seahawks will have to rebound and travel to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles next Sunday in the first round of the playoffs.
Per the NFL’s website, the Seahawks-Eagles contest will start at 1:40 p.m. next Sunday in the last game of the wild card weekend.
A Seattle win over San Francisco would have given them the NFC West title and the No. 3 seed in the conference. Then in the first round, Seattle would have hosted the Minnesota Vikings, who have the NFC’s No. 6 seed, for a rematch of Week 13. The Seahawks won that game 37-30 at home on Monday Night Football.
Instead, the Seahawks will have a rematch of Week 12.
When these two teams last faced off, the Seahawks were coming off their Week 11 bye at 8-2 and riding high after a big 27-24 overtime win against the 49ers in Week 10. The Eagles, meanwhile, were 5-5 and struggling to stay in the playoff picture after some less than stellar quarterback play from Carson Wentz and a litany of injuries.
Seattle won the game 17-9, with six of the Eagles’ points coming in a “garbage time” touchdown with just 20 seconds left in the game.
Since then, the Seahawks have gone 2-4 while the Eagles have gone 4-1. Seattle dropped three of their last four games to end the regular season.
Wentz has played better, but the Eagles are still dealing with a variety of injuries, especially at wide receiver. Seattle knows all about injuries, as a number of key contributors have missed games late in the season or are out for the year, such as running backs Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny.
While hosting a home playoff game would have been nice, the Seahawks have been noticeably better on the road this year. Of Seattle’s 11 wins, seven were on the road, including in Philadelphia. Seattle was just 4-4 at home this season, including losing its final two.
“We’re not worried about going on the road,” Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said after the loss to the 49ers.
As far as injuries are concerned, the Seahawks may get another starter back next week.
Defensive starters Jadeveon Clowney and Shaquill Griffin returned to the lineup in Week 17, but safety Quandre Diggs was out again with an ankle injury. Carroll said Diggs has a “really good chance” of playing against the Eagles, however.
“We missed him out there,” Carroll said, adding that Diggs has been doing more in practice, such as running, than he was previously.
The rest of the NFC playoff picture is also set.
The 49ers are the No. 1 seed and have home-field advantage for the playoffs as well as a first-round bye. The Green Bay Packers are the No. 2 seed and also have a first-round playoff bye.
The New Orleans Saints, who beat the Seahawks in Seattle earlier this season, are the No. 3 seed and will host the Vikings. Rounding out the seeding, in order, are the Eagles, Seahawks and Vikings.
The Saints and Vikings play before the Seahawks and Eagles on Sunday, the Seahawks will find out before their game who and where they’ll play if they win next week.
The lowest remaining seed will travel to San Francisco while the other winner will travel to Green Bay. A Saints win coupled with a Seahawks win would therefore send Seattle to San Francisco while a Vikings win with a Seattle win would have the Seahawks heading to Green Bay to take on the Packers.