The Seattle Seahawks are still alive. They beat the Dallas Cowboys on the road last week to end a two game losing streak, which included a 42-7 thrashing at the hands of the now NFC West Champion Los Angeles Rams.
Seattle needs to beat the Cardinals this week and have the Atlanta Falcons lose to Carolina to make the postseason. A Seahawks' loss to the Falcons earlier in the season was a damaging blow, forcing them to need help from the Panthers this weekend. It was also Atlanta that ended Seattle's season a year ago with a win in the division round of the playoffs.
The Seahawks "Legion of Boom" has imploded because of injuries and in-fighting. The offense is almost
completely reliant on Russell Wilson to win games. Other than Tom Brady, Wilson might be the most indispensable player in the NFL right now, accumulating a quarterback rating of 95 while leading the team in rushing. There has even been talk about head coach Pete Carroll's job status being in doubt. All of this can be rectified if the Seahawks win Sunday, the Falcons lose, and then Seattle makes some noise in the playoffs -- something they're certainly capable of doing.
Meanwhile, it's been a disappointing season for the Cardinals, staring at their second straight non-winning season following a trip to the NFC Championship game. But there is still a lot to play for.
Despite a number of injuries to key players, Arizona has held it together, and would finish 8-8 if it can win in Seattle. Finishing .500 and delivering a knockout punch to Seattle's 2017 season would be most gratifying. The Cards are 3-1 at CenturyLink Field since Bruce Arians took over in 2013, including a win last season that cost the Seahawks a first-round playoff bye.
This could be the last game for several Cardinals players and coaches, including the future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald. Don't tell the Cardinals or their fans this game is meaningless. Beating Seattle, ending the Seahawks' playoff hopes, and perhaps even their run as a championship contender, while possibly sending several Cardinals employees out in style would be a sweet end to an otherwise sour season.