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Eagles' reign of the NFC intensifies as Aaron Rodgers goes down

Looking at the conference's top contenders and the problems each team has.

Russell Wilson has come under constant pressure because of Seattle’s inconsistent offensive line.
Russell Wilson has come under constant pressure because of Seattle’s inconsistent offensive line.Read moreTNS

Taking a spin around the NFC, where the Eagles would be the No. 1 seed if the season were over today.

Eagles (5-1)

Sunday: Did not play. Spent the day watching a lot things go their way, especially in Minnesota and Atlanta.

Biggest problem: Determining how to pay the police overtime for next February's parade. Oh, and there are also 10 more games to play.

Next three weeks: vs. Washington, San Francisco, and Denver. All at home.

Seahawks (3-2)

Sunday: Had a bye.

Biggest problem: The offensive line has been inconsistent the last couple of years, which has led to troubles with the running game and constant pressure on Russell Wilson when they throw it.  Looked good the last two weeks, with a rout of Indianapolis and a gritty win at the Rams.

Threat to Eagles: High. They still have a dangerous defense. Eagles would do well to finish ahead of Seattle and avoid having to play out there.

Next three weeks: at N.Y. Giants, vs. Houston, vs. Washington.

Saints (3-2)

Sunday: Beat the Lions in the wildest game of the day, 52-38. Led, 45-10, in the third quarter.

Biggest problem: Their pass defense can be an adventure. They gave up 346 yards to Sam Bradford in Week 1, 447 to Tom Brady in Week 2 and 312 to Matthew Stafford on Sunday, most of it as Detroit tried to come back from a huge deficit.

Threat to Eagles: Moderate. Won three in a row, but that defense is so unpredictable.

Next three weeks: at Green Bay, vs. Chicago, vs. Tampa Bay.

Vikings (4-2)

Sunday: Beat the Packers, 23-10, in a game made infinitely easier when Aaron Rodgers got hurt. The Vikes improved to 4-1 in the conference, which is a half-game back of the Eagles (4-0). Record within the conference is the second tiebreaker to determine playoff seedings among division winners. The first is head-to-head, and the Eagles and Vikings do not play this season.

Biggest problem: Case Keenum is the quarterback until Sam Bradford gets back from a knee injury.

Threat to Eagles: Uncertain. But a playoff game here against Bradford would be fun.

Next three weeks: vs. Baltimore, at Cleveland, bye.

Panthers (4-2)

Sunday: Did not play, of course. Spent the day licking the wounds inflicted Thursday by the Eagles.

Biggest problem:  Their running game, which has been their identity, has let them down. The running backs are averaging 2.8 yards per attempt and have no rushing TDs. Thursday's loss to the Eagles could be costly when it's time to talk tiebreakers in January.

Threat to Eagles: Much less after Thursday.

Next three weeks: at Chicago, at Tampa Bay, vs. Atlanta.

Redskins (3-2)

Sunday: Had to hang on for dear life to beat winless San Francisco at home.

Biggest problem: Have a loss to the Eagles. The rematch is Monday, Oct. 23, at Lincoln Financial Field where they won the last two years.

Threat to Eagles: Would be severely diminished if they get swept by the Birds.

Next three weeks: at Eagles, vs. Dallas, at Seattle.

Rams (4-2)

Sunday: The offense was sluggish, but they beat the Jaguars, 27-17.

Biggest problem: Jared Goff has faced two of the better defenses the last two weeks — Seattle and Jacksonville – and it hasn't gone well.

Threat to Eagles: Light. We'll know better when they host the Eagles in Week 14.

Next three weeks: vs. Arizona (in London), bye, at N.Y. Giants.

Falcons (3-2)

Sunday: Upset by the Dolphins at home, 20-17. Were two-touchdown favorites.

Biggest problem: Don't seem to have the same magic as last season. Losing the Super Bowl has been known to induce hangovers.

Threat to Eagles: They're coming off losses to the Bills and Dolphins. They have bigger birds to fry.

Next three weeks: at New England, at N.Y. Jets, at Carolina.

Green Bay (4-2)

Sunday: Their whole season changed when Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone and could be out for the year.

Biggest problem: Not knowing what they have in backup quarterback Brett Hundley, a fifth-round pick in 2015 who went 18 for 33 on Sunday with one touchdown and three picks.

Threat to Eagles: Brett Hundley? Do you hafta ask?

Next three weeks: vs. New Orleans, bye, vs. Detroit.

Dallas (2-3)

Sunday: Had a bye.

Biggest problem: Star running back Ezekiel Elliott is again staring at a six-game suspension. Lost two of their three home games.

Threat to Eagles: They're just trying to figure out what to do during the national anthem.

Next three weeks: at San Francisco, at Washington, vs. Kansas City.