Saints Playoff Picture after Week 9: New Orleans on the outside looking in

Divisional Round - Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New Orleans Saints
Divisional Round - Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New Orleans Saints / Chris Graythen/GettyImages

As a wise head coach once proclaimed, "Playoffs?!" That's probably the same reaction New Orleans Saints fans had when reading the title because this team being a playoff team is laughable at this point.

I will say that I wouldn't write weekly playoff pieces for the Saints if they were totally out of the running and since they absolutely still have a chance to win their garbage division, they're still in the hunt to be a playoff team despite having three wins to their name right now. What a weird season, huh?

The Saints' only chance of making the playoffs at this point is by winning the NFC South. They're only a game behind the division-leading Buccaneers and they own the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Falcons, who are tied for first place in the NFC South. It's crazy to think that New Orleans could not only be in the playoffs but HOSTING a playoff game but here we are.

Saints Playoff Picture following Week 9 loss

1. Philadelphia Eagles (8-0)
2. Minnesota Vikings (7-1)
3. Seattle Seahawks (6-3)
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-5)
5. Dallas Cowboys (6-2)
6. New York Giants (6-2)
7. San Francisco 49ers (4-4)
In the Hunt: Atlanta Falcons (4-5), Washington Commanders (4-5), Los Angeles Rams (3-5), New Orleans Saints (3-6), Green Bay Packers (3-6), Arizona Cardinals (3-6), Chicago Bears (3-6)

As I mentioned above, the only realistic way the Saints can punch their ticket to the playoffs is by winning the division, which isn't farfetched. The entire NFC South is a dumpster fire and while I still would bet that the Buccaneers win the division, crazier things have happened in the NFL.

If the season ended this week, the Vikings would host the 49ers, the Seahawks would host the Giants, and the Bucs would host the Cowboys. Those would all probably end up being sneaky-fun games, if I'm being entirely honest.

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The NFC has been weird this year and look no further than the NFC South for evidence of that. Even if the Saints managed to get into the postseason, it probably wouldn't end well for them but it'd be a funny situation.