Plotting out 49ers path to No. 1 seed in NFL playoffs after Week 16

The Niners' loss to the Ravens on Christmas dropped them from the No. 1 seed in the NFC to the No. 1 seed in the NFC.

San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle (85) and quarterback Brock Purdy (13)
San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle (85) and quarterback Brock Purdy (13) / Michael Zagaris/GettyImages
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How 49ers clinch No. 1 seed in Week 18?

There's a very simple path for San Francisco to win the No. 1 seed if it boils down to Week 18.

Win against the Rams, who'll visit Levi's Stadium in the regular-season finale for both squads.

If the 49ers win that game and didn't lose the week prior to Washington, it won't matter at all what Philadelphia, Detroit or Dallas do to close out the regular season.

However, if the Niners lose to the Commanders and either/both the Eagles and/or Lions win their respective games in Week 17, then San Francisco would have to not only beat LA in Week 18 but also pull for Philly to lose to the New York Giants on the road and/or Detroit to lose at home against the Minnesota Vikings on the same day.

Not ideal matchups for scoreboard watching.

Of course, the 49ers could lose Week 18 to Los Angeles, too. But if they have at least a one-game lead over the Eagles, Lions or Cowboys, it won't matter.

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