Cowboys’ Possible First-Round Playoff Opponents

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The Cowboys punched their ticket to the postseason when they stomped the visiting Indianapolis Colts 42-7 Sunday.

There's only one week remaining in the regular season and all the NFC playoff spots have been clinched, but there's still a lot that has to happen to determine which of three options Dallas will play in the first round.

Option 1: Nobody

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If the Cowboys win at Washington, Seattle loses at home to St. Louis and Arizona loses at San Francisco Sunday, your Dallas Cowboys will claim the No. 2 seed in the NFC. Add in a tie in the Green Bay-Detroit game, and Cowboys earn the No. 1 seed.

With a first-round bye, the Cowboys could rest for a week before they begin preparing for their opponent in the Divisional Round.

Anything is possible, but Option 1 falls under the "Don't Hold Your Breath" category.

Option 2: Arizona Cardinals

The Cowboys winding up at the No. 3 seed is much more likely, because Seattle doesn't seem like they'll lose at home to St. Louis with the No. 1 seed on the line.

If Seattle wins, Arizona earns the No. 6 seed and a trip to Arlington if they lose and the Green Bay-Detroit game ends in a tie. That's even less likely than Option 1, so let's move on.

Option 3: Loser of Green Bay-Detroit Game

Detroit travels to Green Bay in one of three de facto "Division Title" games — Carolina at Atlanta and Pittsburgh at Cincinnati being the others.

The winner of that game is locked into the No. 2 seed at 12-4 while the loser travels to Dallas as long as Seattle wins. Detroit has a rough history in Green Bay, so...


Anything can happen, but my money is on Dallas, Seattle, Arizona, Green Bay and Atlanta winning Sunday.

If that happens, Arizona would travel to Atlanta and Detroit would play the Cowboys in Arlington in the first round of playoff action.

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