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AFC Playoff Picture: Bills need one more win to move into position

The Bills didn’t quite get all the help they needed in Week 11.

NFL: OCT 01 Steelers at Texans Photo by Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Matt Warren is Associate Director of NFL coverage for SB Nation and previously covered the Bills for Buffalo Rumblings for more than a decade.

The Buffalo Bills came very close to moving back into playoff position this weekend. The Houston Texans were on the ropes against the Arizona Cardinals but gutted out a victory to stay in sixth place in the AFC East, a half-game ahead of the Bills.

Another close call came for the Miami Dolphins, who narrowly defeated the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday. Miami needs one more loss in order for the Bills to control their destiny in the AFC East.

When all was said and done on Thursday and Sunday, the Wild card race is still wild. The Cleveland Browns beat the Steelers in a game where one of them had to win. The Cincinnati Bengals lost on Thursday night, opening the door for the Bills and a bunch of teams hovering around .500. The Denver Broncos even clawed (hooved!?) their way back in.

The AFC playoff standings won’t change for the Bills after the Monday night game, they’ll stay 8th heading into next Sunday. No AFC teams play on Thanksgiving and the Dolphins and Jets face off on Black Friday. I’ll be rooting for the Jets.

Here are the standings as of right now:

AFC Standings (pre-SNF)

1. Kansas City Chiefs (7-2) MNF
2. Baltimore Ravens (8-3)
3*. Jacksonville Jaguars (7-3)
3*. Miami Dolphins (7-3)
5. Cleveland Browns (7-3)
6. Houston Texans (6-4, win over PIT)
7. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-4, loss to HOU)
8. Buffalo Bills (6-5)
9. Indianapolis Colts (5-5, 4-3 AFC)
10. Denver Broncos (5-5, 2-4)
11. Cincinnati Bengals (5-5, 1-5 AFC)
12. Las Vegas Raiders (5-6)
13. Los Angeles Chargers (4-6, win over NYJ)
14. New York Jets (4-6, loss to LAC)
15. Tennessee Titans (3-7)
16. New England Patriots (2-8)