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Who will Giants face in first playoff matchup?


* explores the team's potential playoff opponents: *

Who Could the Giants Play in Round One?

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The Giants are headed to the playoffs for the first time since 2011. Even with a Week 17 matchup with the Washington Redskins left on the schedule, the Giants are locked into the No. 5 seed and will play a wild card game on Jan. 7 or 8.

But who will be their opponent? Let's take a look at the possibilities:

Atlanta Falcons (10-5)

The Falcons are riding into the final week of the season as the second seed in the NFC behind the Cowboys, who won the NFC East and will maintain home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. It is not likely that the Falcons will fall to the fourth seed, but it is still possible. The Falcons would have to lose to the Saints at home on Sunday, and both the Lions and Seahawks would have to win. While the Lions are at home with the NFC North title on the line against the Packers, it is not totally out of the question.

The Falcons are led by quarterback Matt Ryan and wide receiver Julio Jones. Ryan is currently ranked third in the NFL with 4,613 passing yards, while Jones ranks third in receiving yards with 1,313.

Green Bay Packers (9-6)

The Packers currently hold the fourth seed entering the final week. With a win against the Lions and a Seahawks win over the 49ers, the Packers would be locked in as the fourth seed and host the Giants.

Led by quarterback Aaron Rodgers, the Packers have won five straight games to roar back into playoff contention. In those games, Rodgers has thrown for 1,367 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Seattle Seahawks (9-5-1)

The Seahawks would play the Giants if Seattle loses to the 49ers. The Seahawks are led by linebacker Bobby Wagner, who sits atop the NFL in combined tackles with 155.

Detroit Lions (9-6)

The Lions were defeated on Monday night by the Cowboys. For the Giants to play the Lions, Detroit would have to beat the Packers on Sunday to win the NFC North. If the Lions lose Sunday and the Redskins defeat the Giants, the Lions will be eliminated from playoff contention. However, if the Lions, Falcons and Seahawks all win, Detroit will finish as the fourth seed and host the Giants.

The Lions are led by quarterback Matt Stafford, who has thrown for 3,720 yards and 22 touchdowns. Although dealing with a finger injury, Stafford is dangerous and more than capable of leading the Lions to the playoffs.

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