NFL playoff odds: Detroit Lions almost a lock to win the NFC North

It's not too surprising, but based on the latest playoff odds the Detroit Lions are darn near a lock to win the NFC North.

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The Detroit Lions have been pretty shaky overall since the bye week, but they have won three of their last four games. A full three-game lead, with five weeks to go, puts them in firm command of the NFC North right now.

At 9-3, the Lions are tied for the second-best record in the NFL. Their first playoff berth since 2016 feels like a lock, and their first division title since 1993 (when it was called the NFC Central) is in play.

With Week 13 now in the books, playoff odds have been updated across the board. ESPN's updated Football Power Index has the Lions with a 98.5 percent chance to make the playoffs. DVOA, the New York Times and Playoff Status.com all have their playoff chances at 99 percent or a shade better (h/t to Pride of Detroit).

So only a complete collapse over the final five games, and maybe not even that depending on how things go around them, would cost the Lions a playoff spot.

But what about beyond that, you say?

NFL playoff odds: Detroit Lions practically a lock to win NFC North

Per ESPN's FPI, the Lions have an 89.5 percent chance to win the NFC North. DVOA has their odds at 91.4 percent, the New York Times has the odds at 95 percent and Playoff Status.com has it at 92 percent.

The Lions have both of their games against the Minnesota Vikings left, in Week 16 and 18. The possibility the Vikings win both keeps the Lions from having an even higher chance to win the division.

ESPN doesn't give the Lions any chance to earn the No. 1 seed in the NFC. But DVOA, the New York Times and Playoff Status have the chances at 5.5 percent, 7 percent and 8 percent respectively, boosted by the San Francisco 49ers beating the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 13.

ESPN's FPI gives the Lions these chances at winning a playoff game, etc.

To Make Divisional Round: 61.7 percent
To Make Conference Championship Game: 19.6 percent (fourth highest in NFC)
To Make Super Bowl: 6.0 percent (eighth-highest in the league, fourth in the NFC)
To Win Super Bowl: 2.1 percent

These probabilities could change a lot in the coming weeks. But a playoff spot and a division title are practical locks for the Lions without jinxing anything, and the odds of a playoff win (driven by the likelihood it's a home game) are quite good too.

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