No matter how the weekend works out, Tampa Bay is assured of winning in some way. Of course, one way is bigger than the other.
If the Eagles beat the Cowboys and the Buccaneers win their game against the Raiders, then Tampa Bay is in the postseason. It would be the greatest holiday gift Philadelphia could give Tampa Bay.
But if Philadelphia loses, there’s a consolation gift for Tampa Bay: The Eagles would miss out on the playoffs again, and the criticism of quarterback Donovan McNabb would continue — as would speculation that McNabb would stay on with the team.
If the Eagles lose their regular-season finale, they might be more apt to make changes, which could include their quarterback.
So if the Eagles win Sunday, Tampa Bay would likely earn a playoff berth. If the Eagles lose, Tampa Bay would likely have an increased chance at trading for McNabb. Either way, Tampa Bay wins something.
Of course, it would prefer the playoff spot.