Green Bay Packers: Which teams to root for in Week 13

BALTIMORE, MD - NOVEMBER 27: Quarterback Joe Flacco
BALTIMORE, MD - NOVEMBER 27: Quarterback Joe Flacco /

Which teams can help the Green Bay Packers out in Week 13?

All Mike McCarthy’s team can do is take care of themselves. By winning out, the Packers will give themselves a good chance of making the playoffs for a ninth year in a row.

But they’ll need a little help along the way. As many as eight teams can be considered in the hunt for a wild-card berth in the NFC, and despite the Packers’ struggles since Aaron Rodgers went down, they are firmly in the mix.

Green Bay’s margin for error is paper thin, but by winning out it has a shot of getting in. It will need some results to fall the right way, starting in Week 13. Here’s a few teams to cheer on this week.

Minnesota Vikings (at Falcons)

At this point we have to assume the NFC North race is over. Unless the Vikings go 1-4 in their final five, including a loss at Lambeau Field, the Packers have no chance of winning the division.

It’s far more likely Green Bay grabs a wild-card berth, which is why it’s important to root against Atlanta. The best record the Packers can finish on is 10-6. As the Falcons hold the head-to-head tiebreaker over Mike McCarthy’s team, they only need three more wins to guarantee they finish above the Pack.

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Atlanta’s schedule is tough. Following the visit of Minnesota, it faces two games against New Orleans and a meeting with Carolina. A loss here could place a major dent in the Falcons’ playoff ambitions.

Baltimore Ravens (vs. Lions)

The Lions are also ahead of the Packers in the wild-card race. But unlike Atlanta, Detroit’s schedule is favorable for the remainder of the season. After a trip to Baltimore, the Lions face the Buccaneers, Bears and Bengals before a Week 17 clash with the Packers.

Green Bay needs Detroit to drop a game at some point, then win out with a victory at Ford Field to finish the regular season. Sound familiar? The Packers did exactly that last year.

New Orleans Saints (vs. Panthers)

New Orleans, Carolina and Atlanta are all locked in the NFC South race. From a Packers perspective, it’s probably best for the Saints to run away with the division, beating their two rivals along the way. The Saints (8-3) are effectively four games clear of the Packers (5-6) as they hold the head-to-head tiebreaker.

New Orleans can help out Green Bay by defeating its NFC South rivals and improving the Pack’s chances of grabbing a wild-card spot.

Philadelphia Eagles (at Seahawks)

The Eagles are another team the Packers don’t need to worry about. Philadelphia is on course to wrap up the NFC East and potentially take the conference’s top seed with it. Seattle, on the other hand, is second in the NFC West and a direct playoff rival to the Packers.

The Seahawks currently hold a two-game lead over the Pack, but Green Bay has the tiebreaker after beating them in Week 1. If the Packers and Eagles both win in Week 13, the gap will be cut in half.

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Seattle still has to play Jacksonville, Los Angeles and Dallas. Defeat here could be bad, bad news for the ‘Hawks. Their loss would be the Packers’ gain.