Playoff Longshot

Jim Fassel admitted it's hard to be optimistic about the 7-6 Giants' playoff chances because of the remaining schedules of the teams they must beat out...

Jim Fassel admitted it's hard to be optimistic about the 7-6 Giants' playoff chances because of the remaining schedules of the teams they must beat out. Philadelphia plays Washington (5-8), Dallas (5-8) and the Giants. Tampa Bay will face Detroit (3-10), Pittsburgh (7-5-1) and Chicago (3-10). Atlanta finishes with Seattle (4-9), Detroit (3-10) and Cleveland (7-6). New Orleans has Minnesota (3-10), Cincinnati (1-12) and Carolina (5-8).

The Giants, meanwhile, will host the Cowboys (5-8), visit Indianapolis (8-5) and entertain Philadelphia (10-3).

"I saw the record of our opponents in the next three games and the record of their opponents, and we obviously have the toughest schedule," Fassel said. "But it's part of what we do for a living. You better have a strong belief in what you're doing and you just have to go forward. Don't worry about all the other stuff. Like I've said, I don't worry about things I can't control.

"We need to win the next three games. If we do that and we don't get in, we don't get in. If we do that, and they stub their toe - which can happen in this league, dramatically - then we will have fought our way back through it. But I can't worry about what they're doing. All I can do is get this team ready to go play. Because it doesn't matter if we don't go win."

The Giants can win the NFC East title if they win their final three games and Philadelphia is defeated in its last three. They can earn a wild card berth if they win three and Tampa Bay loses three or Atlanta loses two or New Orleans loses two (provided one of the defeats is to Minnesota). The Giants can also earn a wild card by winning two of their last three if Atlanta suffers three defeats.


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