I was hoping the Pats would beat the Panthers and hold the #2 seed in the AFC. The Colts (7-3, current #2) have been looking inconsistent and the Bengals already have 4 losses, so it was feasible the Week 17 game in Foxborough could have been meaningless to the Patriots. I'm not getting my hopes up yet, but it's not crazy that the Bills could be 8-7 come Week 17 and right in the race for the 6th spot.
Now at 7-3, the Pats are tied with the Colts and they don't have the tiebreaker. We could see the Patriots playing for a first round bye in Week 17, making it a lot more difficult for the Bills.