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Joe Judge Sums Up His Mindset Heading Into Week 17

Joe Judge at his introductory press conference as New York Giants head coach.

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - JANUARY 09: Joe Judge talks to the media after he was introduced as the new head coach of the New York Giants during a news conference at MetLife Stadium on January 9, 2020 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

The New York Giants enter Week 17 with 10 losses on the season, a record that would have 99-percent of teams throughout NFL history eliminated at this point. That's not the case in the 2020 NFC East, however.

Washington Football Team sits in first place this weekend, at 6-9. If Ron Rivera's team can beat the 4-10-1 Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday Night Football, it will host a playoff game as a sub-.500 squad.

Things get even whackier if Washington is upset by the reeling Eagles on Sunday. The 1 p.m. ET game between the 6-9 Dallas Cowboys and 5-10 Giants would wind up deciding the division, and the fourth seed in the NFC Playoffs. It sounds ridiculous, but Joe Judge isn't apologizing for the position his team finds itself in this season. They aren't counting their playoff chickens before they hatch either.

“We’re going to keep our focus on Dallas. It’s the only thing we can control,” Judge said this week, per the New York Post. “We’re not focused on the playoffs. It’s a hypothetical game. At the same time, it’s human nature that they are very conscious of what’s going on around the league and it would be naïve or ignorant to pretend they are not paying attention."

“You want every game you ever play to be relevant,” the first-year head coach continued. “The opportunity that’s really sitting in front of us that we have to take advantage of is to play a division rival and play the last game of the season with our best football.

"How you improve collectively throughout the year is the ultimate measure of what you are trying to do. I’ve never talked about a record as being a goal in any situation I’ve been in.”

6-10 or 10-6, any first-year head coach, facing the adversity that the New York Giants have this season, would happily sign for a playoff berth. whichever NFC East team makes it out, it is going to make for a truly bizarre playoff picture, though.

[New York Post]