9-7 Will Win NFC East For First Time Ever

Perhaps this speaks to just how fortunate Cowboys and Giants fans should feel that they have a chance to extend their season on Sunday, or perhaps it's a testament to the fact neither team is really deserving of the title NFC East champs.

For the first time since being formed as the NFL Capitol Division in 1967, a record as poor as 9-7 will win the title. Renamed the NFC East in the merger of 1970, a record of 10-6 has won the division seven times.

Since the league went to a 16-game schedule in 1978, a record of 9-7 or worse has been good enough to win any division only 20 times. It has happened more frequently in recent years, since the parity of the salary cap era has made for fewer outliers in the win-loss chase.

Last year, Seattle became the first team to ever win its division with a losing record, finishing 7-9 and beating St. Louis in Week 17 to get into the playoffs. The Seahawks then upset New Orleans in a home playoff game.

In the last decade, seven teams have won their respective divisions at 9-7 or worse.

Arizona, which won the NFC West at 9-7 in 2008, was the only one of those teams to advance to the Super Bowl.

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