NFL Playoffs, Washington Redskins

Updated NFL playoff picture: Washington Redskins need a miracle

After Saturday’s loss to the Tennessee Titans, the Washington Redskins are basically eliminated from the NFC playoff picture.

It’s Week 16 on the NFL schedule, and after the first game on the week’s slate the Washington Redskins can give up on any real hope to make the playoffs.

At one point earlier this season, the Redskins were 6-3 and leading the NFC East. But they lost quarterback Alex Smith to a severe leg injury in their next game and backup Colt McCoy also suffered a broken leg, so Mark Sanchez and now Josh Johnson have started games under center for them over a stretch of five losses in six games.

At 7-7, The Redskins were clinging to playoff hopes heading into Saturday’s game against the Tennessee Titans. But a 25-16 loss to the Titans has now essentially eliminated them from the NFC playoff picture, with an unlikely path to a Wild Card spot. Let’s go chronologically.

On Sunday, the Redskins need the Philadelphia Eagles to lose to the Houston Texans and the Minnesota Vikings to lose to the Detroit Lions. Then they of course have to beat the Eagles in Week 17, and the Vikings have to lose to the Chicago Bears as well.

All of that happening is a remote possibility, and John Keim of has added a simpler scenario. If the Vikings win on Sunday, and Seattle Seahawks beat the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday night, the Redskins will be eliminated from playoff contention.

Getting to a fourth starting quarterback is pretty short order, along with a rash of injuries along the offensive line and at wide receiver at other points this season, excuses the Redskins’ fall from the NFC East lead to right out of playoff contention in some respect.

Next: 5 candidates to be the next Denver Broncos head coach

The heat on head coach Jay Gruden’s seat was already turning up as Washington’ season careened downhill. But a 35-43-1 overall record with one game to this season, and with only one postseason appearance in five seasons now, will surely have owner Daniel Snyder ready to find a new head coach.

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