NFL playoff picture: Bills, Seahawks hand big Christmas gift to 49ers

Christmas has come early for the San Francisco 49ers, as the Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles fell to the Buffalo Bills and Seattle Seahawks respectively to give the 49ers a huge boost for the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

Philadelphia Eagles v Seattle Seahawks
Philadelphia Eagles v Seattle Seahawks / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
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An early Christmas gift is always nice, and the 49ers have all but been given the No. 1 seed in the NFC wrapped in a pretty bow, thanks to the Bills and Seahawks.

Christmas time is upon us, and it's always nice to get presents no matter what age you are. We can be corny and say it's about family, but that doesn't mean we don't like gifts, too.

Oh and if you San Francisco 49ers fans look under your trees, you'll find a pretty little gift under there just for you all.

Let's look at the tag: "Love from the Seattle Seahawks and the Buffalo Bills."

What is it? Oh, it's the inside track to the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoff picture! How thoughtful of them to give us what we truly wanted!

Read More: Brock Purdy back as betting-odds favorite for MVP after 49ers throttle Cardinals


Yes, indeed, the Philadelphia Eagles have continued their descent with the Hawks getting the win 20-17 in a hard-fought Monday Night Football battle to close out Week 15 that, quite frankly, will be the only time I will personally go for the Seahawks ever.

At least, I hope it's the only time.

But credit where due, backup quarterback Drew Lock came up extremely clutch in the final two minutes, and the touchdown catch by rookie wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba to finish had to be seen to be believed:

Smith-Njigba is going to be a problem when the Hawks and Niners play, but that's a problem for later on.

As the standings lie at the moment, the 49ers hold an 11-3 record after their win over the Arizona Cardinals. The Eagles, Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions are at 10-4 with the Niners holding the tiebreakers.

So, essentially, it's a two-game lead for San Francisco, and the 49ers only need to win two of the final three games to clinch the No. 1 spot, home-field advantage throughout the playoffs and a first-round bye. If the Niners can beat the Baltimore Ravens in a mouthwatering Monday Night Football matchup on Christmas, then they only need to beat the lowly Washington Commanders or the Los Angeles Rams at home.

If the 49ers do lose to Baltimore, the margin likely tightens again. But at least the 49ers still control their destiny against the Commanders and Rams.

Either way, it's now on the Niners to make sure they don't fumble this extraordinary sequence of events and keep hold of the No. 1 seed. If they can win the next two games, they can rest players for the season finale and rest up for the playoffs as well.

Thank you, Buffalo and Seattle. We owe you a return gift under your own trees.

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