The New England Patriots beat down the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, a game in which any time the South Florida franchise appeared to have some momentum, the Patriots simply went out and added more points. The game locked up two more seeds in the AFC, with just the Oakland Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs left to battle out their positioning.
The current playoff standings in the AFC, with the Patriots-Dolphins results factored into picture, are:
AFC Playoff standings (through Week 17 early games)
1. New England Patriots (14-2) - AFC East champ; top seed/home-field advantage clinched
2. Oakland Raiders (12-3) - playoff berth clinched; Can finish in second- or fifth-seed
3. Pittsburgh Steelers (11-5) - AFC North champ; Locked into third seed
4. Houston Texans (9-7) - AFC South champ; Locked into fourth seed
5. Kansas City Chiefs (11-4) - playoff berth clinched; Can finish in second- or fifth-seed
6. Miami Dolphins (10-6) - playoff berth clinched; locked into sixth seed
If the Raiders lose to Denver and the Chiefs beat the Chargers, Kansas City will move into the second seed. If Oakland wins or Kansas City loses, the Raiders will remain in that position.
With Miami and Pittsburgh each locked into their positions, the Dolphins will head north to face the Steelers next weekend. The league has not scheduled the specific kickoff times for the weekend.