A win by the Dallas Cowboys on Monday night would somehow inch them closer to a playoff berth -- while improving their record to 4-8. Knocking off the Washington Redskins would set up an effective three-way tie for first in the NFC East at 5-7, with Dallas trailing behind by just a game.
And that's exactly what happened.
Entrancingly miserable seasons by all four teams in the division have set up not only a possibility, but a likelihood that the playoffs will see a team under .500 -- perhaps even with just six wins.
Monday night's fiasco came down to a last-second field goal by Cowboys kicker Dan Bailey. Bailey knocked in a 54-yarder with 14 ticks left, putting Dallas up 19-16 -- the score they would go on to win by.
The kick was the finale to an episode of fourth-quarter fireworks, including a fantastic Dez Bryant grab that led to a Darren McFadden touchdown run.
The result sent the division race into even more of a tizzy. According to FiveThirtyEight, the Eagles currently sit as the favorites, with a 43 percent chance to clinch the crown, as Dallas crawls back into the conversation with a 10 percent chance.
"Real credit to our guys, the fight, & the relentlessness of our football team."
- Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett pic.twitter.com/NX8lGN81M0
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) December 8, 2015
With four games left to play for each team, the race -- or crawl -- to the finish line will certainly be competitive, if not enthralling.
As Terrell Owens used to say, get your popcorn ready. And maybe some coffee to stay awake, if you think you'll need it.
Cowboys 19, Redskins 16
See the best photos from Week 13: