Mike McCarthy loves the idea of his Green Bay Packers having something significant to play for in the Sunday's regular-season finale.
Sunday's NFC North championship game against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field gives McCarthy precisely what he wants. The winner not only earns the NFC North crown, it also get the NFC's No. 2 seed and the first-round playoff bye and divisional-round home game that go with it. Even the top NFC seed could come to the winner.
Both teams are 11-4, with the Lions having won the first meeting 19-7 at Ford Field on Sept. 21.
The loser Sunday will be a wild card and would have to go on the road in the playoffs, something the Packers, a perfect 7-0 at home, would like to avoid.
But to McCarthy, this setup is ideal: a playoff-style atmosphere with plenty on the line, and a chance for a week off and a home playoff game.