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2019 NFL playoff picture: Patriots are back in the number two seed after Texans lose against Eagles

New England is one win away from securing a first-round bye.

Houston Texans v New England Patriots Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The New England Patriots entered the weekend as the third seed in the AFC’s playoff race. However, they will leave it with a very good chance of earning a first-round bye in the postseason as today’s games went perfectly for the team so far: not only did the Patriots beat the Buffalo Bills 24-12 to win the AFC East for a tenth straight year, they also saw the Houston Texans lose 32-30 against the Philadelphia Eagles.

The AFC’s playoff picture therefore looks as follows at the moment:

1. Kansas City Chiefs (11-3)*

2. New England Patriots (10-5)

3. Houston Texans (10-5)

4. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-5-1)*

5. Los Angeles Chargers (11-4)

6. Baltimore Ravens (9-6)

*games have yet to be played: Chiefs in Seattle; Steelers in New Orleans

In the hunt: Indianapolis Colts (9-6); Tennessee Titans (9-6)

The Patriots are now in the driver’s seat for a first-round playoff bye thanks to their week one victory against the Texans. And as things stand right now — with the Chiefs (as well as the Steelers) yet to play this week, the number one seed is still technically possible if highly unlikely. That being said, New England still needs to win one more game in order to actually lock up the bye week over the Texans.

Let’s take a look at the remaining schedules to find out what lies ahead:

NFL schedule week 17

Team Chiefs Patriots Texans Steelers Chargers Ravens
Team Chiefs Patriots Texans Steelers Chargers Ravens
Week 17 vs Raiders vs Jets vs Jaguars vs Bengals at Broncos vs Browns

While the Patriots will host the New York Jets next week, the Texans go against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The path to the second seed is simple for New England: win and you’re it. And considering how well the team is performing at home compared to on the road (7-0 vs. 3-5), getting a home playoff game in the divisional round would be huge. Today’s games so far have helped getting there.

The NFC’s playoff picture currently looks as follows:

1. New Orleans Saints (12-2)*

2. Los Angeles Rams (11-3)*

3. Chicago Bears (10-4)*

4. Dallas Cowboys (9-6)

5. Seattle Seahawks (8-6)*

6. Minnesota Vikings (9-6-1)

In the hunt: Philadelphia Eagles (8-7)

Welcome to the Pats Pulpit Live Postgame Show! The Patriots clinched their 10th straight AFC East title today with a win over the Bills. Send us your questions and comments!

Posted by Pats Pulpit: For New England Patriots News on Sunday, December 23, 2018