NFL Playoff Picture: Philadelphia Eagles Need Christmas Miracle to Make Playoffs

Darren GrossmanCorrespondent IDecember 22, 2011

Andy Reid and Michael Vick need to win out and get a little Christmas miracle to make the postseason for the 10th time in Reid's Philly tenure
Andy Reid and Michael Vick need to win out and get a little Christmas miracle to make the postseason for the 10th time in Reid's Philly tenurePatrick McDermott/Getty Images

A few weeks ago, the playoffs seemed all but over.  The Eagles were blown out in Seattle on Thursday night to fall to 4-8.  No one was even thinking about the playoffs.

Just two weeks later, the Eagles sit at 6-8, and now the playoffs are at least a possibility.  It is still a stretch and they need some help, but the fact that this team is even in the playoff conversation is amazing.

This past year, stranger things have happened.  The Cardinals were almost 10 games back in September and won the World Series.  The Bruins came out of nowhere to win the Stanley Cup. 

What does that have to do with the Eagles' chances?  Well, nothing really, except it's been a strange year, and the impossible has become possible already this season.  In that example, Philadelphia was on the wrong end of the miracle, as the Cardinals knocked out the Phillies.

This time, Philadelphia might be on the right end of the magic.  If the Eagles win out, which they have to do to give themselves a chance, they would have won four straight games and not only could make the playoffs, but could actually get a home playoff game.  If this team wins four straight games, they will be a team no one wants to play in the playoffs.

I think the two teams on the outside looking in that no teams would want to face in the playoffs are the Eagles in the NFC and the Chargers in the AFC.

So, on Christmas Eve, there are almost two Eagles games on that day.  While Eagles fans are getting ready for Santa and the holiday, Philadelphia's eyes will be glued to MetLife Stadium where the Giants are playing the Jets in the battle of New York.

It is perhaps ironic that the same team the Eagles beat last week will now need to win to keep the Eagles alive.  The Redskins beating the Giants kept the door open last week, now the Eagles need the Jets to beat the Giants at 1:00.  If the Jets beat the Giants, the Eagles will still have hope going into their 4pm showdown in Dallas.  If the Giants win, the Eagles are eliminated.

Personally, I am more than happy to have a guy with the last name Ryan coaching a game to keep the Eagles alive.  The Eagles have good history with that last name, so I have faith that Rex Ryan will pull that game out for the Jets, and coincidentally, help the Eagles.

Then the Eagles will have to go beat down Rex's brother in Dallas.  The strangest part is if that all happens,  they need that same Giants team, who needed to lose twice to keep them alive, to beat Dallas the final week and the Eagles need to beat Washington.  If any of those things don't happen, the Eagles are out.  If they all happen, the Eagles are in as the No. 4 seed in the NFC.

If there were ever a time for something magical to happen, this time of year is the time to do it.  It is the Christmas season, and it is perhaps fitting that the Eagles need a little Christmas magic to keep them alive.  So Eagles fans everywhere should only want two things for Christmas: a Jets win and an Eagles win.  If that happens, Santa Claus will come to Philadelphia a day early.

So for Christmas this year, the city of Philadelphia does not need any presents, stocking stuffers or eggnog.  Instead, all we need is some good fortune on the football field.  If the Eagles get in the playoffs, anything can happen.  Just ask the Cardinals and Bruins.