Update: Bears and Packers control destiny

Thanks to everyone who responded to Monday morning's post about playoff destiny. As I noted in the early morning hours, my pea brain wasn't up to figuring out the specifics other than the obvious: The Chicago Bears will clinch the NFC North title if they win their remaining five games.

But as it turns out, the same is true for the Green Bay Packers -- even if the Bears win their next four games and enter the Week 17 showdown between the teams one game ahead. Here's how the Packers would win the NFC North if that scenario occurs and both teams finish the season 12-4:

  • The first tiebreaker is head-to-head matchups. The teams would have split the season series, so we move to division record.

  • Each team would have a 5-1 division record, so we move to common games.

  • Each team would be 10-2 in the 12 games in which they shared common opponents, so we move to conference record.

  • The Packers would win the division based on a one-game advantage in their conference record. They would be 9-3, whereas the Bears would be 8-4. The difference would be the Bears' Week 4 loss to the New York Giants. If they win their remaining games, the Packers will have to defeat the Giants in Week 16.

With so much time left in the season, it's a little early to start talking about either team winning out. But if you're into destiny, you can rest assured that both the Bears and Packers have their own firmly in grasp.