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NFL Week 17 Sunday early game thread

Regular season early slate finales

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Tennessee Titans Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Week 17 provides a much more balanced slate with eight early games followed by seven late/afternoon games. This evening, the San Francisco 49ers (12-3) will aim to clinch the NFC West, and the NFC’s No. 1 seed at CenturyLink Field in the Sunday Night Football game against the Seattle Seahawks (11-4). A loss for the 49ers spells a 5th seed. So let’s just root for that.

Here’s a look a the early games today:

Chargers (5-10) at Chiefs (11-4)

  • Sunday, 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • Spread: KC -9 (45.5)
  • Playoff implications: The Chiefs can get the 2-seed in the AFC with a win and a Patriots loss. Otherwise, they’ll lock in the 3-seed. They can also lose today and still earn the No. 3 seed if the Texans (vs. Titans) also lose.

Bears (7-8) at Vikings (10-5)

  • 1 p.m. ET | Fox
  • Spread: MIN -1 (36.5)
  • Playoff implications: The Vikings did their part in Week 16 to give the Rams hope of earning the NFC’s No. 6 seed. Sadly, the Rams didn’t do theirs. The Vikings are locked in at 6 regardless of the outcome.

Falcons (6-9) at Buccaneers (7-8)

  • 1 p.m. ET | Fox
  • Spread: TB -1 (48)
  • Playoff implications: Yeah, no.

Saints (12-3) at Panthers (5-10)

  • 1 p.m. ET | Fox
  • Spread: NO -13 (46.5)
  • Playoff implications: The Saints still have a shot at the NFC’s No. 1 seed, but that will require a win, coupled by a loss for either the 49ers or Packers. If those pieces don’t fall into place, they earn the No. 3 seed.

Dolphins (4-11) at Patriots (12-3)

  • 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • Spread: NE -16 (45)
  • Playoff implications: Patriots lock in the AFC’s No. 2 seed with a win or a Chiefs’ loss. Worst case scenario for New England is the No. 3 seed.

Packers (12-3) at Lions (3-11-1)

  • 1 p.m. ET | Fox
  • Spread: GB -12.5 (43)
  • Playoff implications: If Green Bay wins and the 49ers lose, the Packers are the NFC’s No. 1 seed. If both teams win, Green Bay becomes the NFC’s No. 2 seed.

Jets (6-9) at Bills (10-5)

  • 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • Spread: BUF -1.5 (36.5)
  • Playoff implications: Bills have locked in the 5 seed in the AFC. Win or lose, they stay at 5.

Browns (6-9) at Bengals (1-14)

  • 1 p.m. ET | Fox
  • Spread: CLE -2.5 (43.5)
  • Playoff implications: Haha!