As everyone is all wrapped up in how the New England Patriots nearly pulled off an incredible comeback against the San Francisco 49ers, it seems that this is almost going forgotten: The New England Patriots no longer control their own destiny.
With this loss against the San Francisco 49ers, the Patriots now drop to 10-4 in the AFC as well as dropping into the No. 3 seed—one game behind the Denver Broncos.
The Broncos took care of business Sunday, unlike the Patriots, as they blew out the Baltimore Ravens 34-17.
Denver now controls their own destiny when it comes to a playoff bye. The Broncos will take on the Cleveland Browns and the Kansas City Chiefs for the remaining two games while the Patriots will play against the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Miami Dolphins.
I might as well go out on a limb and say that all four of these games are "easy" wins for the Broncos and Patriots—which means that Denver will likely end up with a playoff bye.
Sunday night's loss against the 49ers was devastating for New England. Entering this week, the Patriots had the possibility of capturing the No. 1 seed in the AFC but now end up likely not even having a playoff bye.
It's amazing how quickly things can change.
If the playoffs were to start next week, New England would play host against the Cincinnati Bengals.