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Week 17 AM game thread

We break down some of the morning games in Week 17, and open a thread for discussion.

Streeter Lecka

The San Francisco 49ers do not get going until later this afternoon, but in the meantime, there are some interesting games going on this morning. The most notable game is Panthers vs. Falcons. If the Panthers win, they clinch the No. 2 seed. If the Panthers lose, it opens the door for an assortment of possibilities. They could still get the No. 2 seed if the Saints lose, they could end up with the No. 5 seed if the Saints win and 49ers lose, and they could end up with the No. 6 seed if the Saints win and 49ers win. If they lose, it opens the door for the 49ers to potentially claim the top seed in the NFC.

The AFC is the busier conference in the morning. The Bengals host the Ravens with various playoff scenarios in play. The Bengals are currently the No. 3 seed, but they can claim a first round bye with a Patriots loss, or they could slip to No. 4 with a loss and a Colts win. The Ravens are tied with the Dolphins and Chargers, but need a win and some help to claim the final wild card spot.

The Houston Texans can clinch the No. 1 pick in the draft with a loss to the Titans, while Washington can clinch the No. 2 pick (for the Rams) with a loss, and can claim the No. 1 pick (for the Rams) with a loss and a Texans win.

The saddest matchup of the day has to be Lions vs. Vikings. The Lions looked to have the upper hand in claiming the NFC North, while the Vikings were coming off an unexpected playoff appearance in 2012. The Vikings season fell apart early on, while the Lions had a late collapse. Will either coach be around after Black Monday?

We'll be back with 49ers-Cardinals inactives 90 minutes before kickoff.