NFL Playoff Picture: New England Patriots Close To Clinching AFC East

LANDOVER, MD - DECEMBER 11: London Fletcher #59 of the Washington Redskins greets Andre Carter #93 of the New England Patriots after the game at FedEx Field on December 11, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

The Patriots have the inside track to the AFC East crown, with the Jets currently holding down the second wildcard spot.

The New England Patriots hold a two-game advantage over the New York Jets in the AFC East and are just inches away from securing the division championship and playoff berth that goes along with it. If the playoffs began this weekend, the Patriots would be the No. 3 seed in the AFC, behind the Houston Texans and Baltimore Ravens. Each team has the same 10-3 record, but the Texans hold the conference win percentage tiebreaker and the Ravens hold the strength of schedule tiebreaker over the Patriots.

The Jets are still very much alive and well in the AFC playoff picture at 8-5. New York leads the race for the second AFC wildcard spot through 14 weeks, holding a one-game advantage over the Tennessee Titans, Cincinnati Bengals and Oakland Raiders. The Jets are two games back of the Pittsburgh Steelers, who currently hold the top wildcard spot in the AFC and No. 5 seed in the playoffs.

At 5-8 the Buffalo Bills are all but out of it, currently three games back of the Jets in the wildcard standings with three weeks to go.

For more on the playoff picture, visit our NFL hub.

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