NFL playoff picture 2013: Bengals, Eagles, Niners pick up important wins in Week 14

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

December games are well underway and there's very little room left for error. Here are the updated playoff seedings.

The playoff races continue in Week 14 and once all the games are officially wrapped up, finishing with the Cowboys and Bears on Monday Night Football, there will be just three weeks to go.

There were some very important games in the NFC with two more important games still to play. Meanwhile in the AFC, the Patriots pulled off another stunner to keep ahead of the Bengals for a bye week but also got some very bad news. Here are the updated playoff seedings in the NFL:

AFC playoff standings

1. Denver Broncos 11-2

2. New England Patriots 10-3

3. Cincinnati Bengals 9-4

4. Indianapolis Colts 8-5

5. Kansas City Chiefs 10-3

6. Baltimore Ravens 7-6

In the hunt: Miami Dolphins 7-6, New York Jets 6-7, San Diego Chargers 6-7

New England pulled off yet another unbelievable comeback, beating the Cleveland Browns 27-26 after recovering an onside kick and getting a very fortunate pass interference call. It was the Patriots' sixth win this season by three points or fewer, but unfortunately for them, it's been reported that tight end Rob Gronkowski may have torn his ACL.

In a meeting of division leaders, the Bengals had a convincing win over Indianapolis, giving them a significant edge over the Colts for playoff seedings with three games to go. Cincinnati could still catch the Patriots or Broncos for a bye week.

In perhaps the wildest game of the season, Baltimore beat the Minnesota Vikings 29-26 on a last-second touchdown to Marlon Brown. It keeps the Ravens ahead of the Dolphins in the wild card race, and keeps alive the defending champions' hopes for a repeat.

NFC playoff standings

1. Seattle Seahawks 11-2

2. New Orleans Saints* 9-3

3. Philadelphia Eagles 8-5

4. Detroit Lions 7-6

5. Carolina Panthers* 9-3

6. San Francisco 49ers 9-4

*Play against each other on Sunday Night Football

In the hunt: Chicago Bears 6-6, Dallas Cowboys 7-5, Arizona Cardinals 8-5, Green Bay Packers 6-6-1

It's a week where nearly every team in an NFC playoff race played against another team in an NFC playoff race.

Detroit went to Philadelphia and lost to the Eagles in a snowstorm. The Lions can't lose their lead in the NFC North this week, but Philly may only be atop the East for a short time. The Cowboys and Bears play each other on Monday night and, if Dallas wins, it'll go back into the spot for the three seed. If the Cowboys lose, then the Eagles can keep their lead in the East, all leading up to their Week 17 match against each other.

If Chicago wins, its record will be even with Detroit's, but it will lose the head-to-head tiebreaker.

The 49ers beat the Seahawks, they will keep a one-game lead over Arizona for the wild card.

Carolina and New Orleans meet on Sunday night for the NFC South lead and in position for a bye week, while the loser will remain in the wild card lead. The two teams meet again in Week 16, so it's hard to say how long the lead in the South could actually last.

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