Houston Texans jump up to No. 2 spot in AFC Playoff race

Quarterback Deshaun Watson #4 - (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images)
Quarterback Deshaun Watson #4 - (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images) /

After another wild week in the AFC, the Houston Texans have moved up to the No. 2 spot in the AFC Playoff race following a win on Saturday and a loss by the New England Patriots.

After Week 15 is complete for the AFC contenders, the 2018 AFC Playoff bracket has a whole new look when it comes to the Houston Texans and their spot in the playoffs. Following the 29-22 win Saturday over the New York Jets, along with a New England Patriots loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers by a 17-10 score on Sunday evening, the Texans now are in position for a first-round bye as they are the No. 2 team in the AFC Playoff race with two weeks to go in the regular season.

The Texans are 10-4 overall following their Week 15 win, and with their loss, the Patriots are 9-5 with the No. 3 spot. That said, there is still a lot of important football remaining in the regular season with the Texans still having a two-game lead over the Tennessee Titans and Indianapolis Colts with two games left.

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The Colts and  Titans will face each other in the regular-season finale in two weeks, while the Texans still have games against the Philadelphia Eagles in Philly for Week 16 and they’ll end the regular season with a home game vs. the Jacksonville Jaguars.

A win next Sunday at Philadelphia would clinch the AFC South championship for the Texans, as that is the easiest way for the Texans to win the division. As for the conclusion of Week 15 games, the AFC Standings look like this (Top 4 are division leaders):

  1. Kansas City Chiefs (11-3)
  2. Houston Texans (10-4)
  3. New England Patriots (9-5)
  4. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5-1)
  5. Los Angeles Chargers (11-3)
  6. Baltimore Ravens (8-6)

There are also five other teams in the AFC who could make the playoffs, including: Colts (8-6), Titans (8-6), Miami Dolphins (7-7), Cleveland Browns (6-7-1) and Cincinnati Bengals (6-8).

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It is very easy for the Texans to earn a bye in the AFC playoffs and that — to borrow a saying from the Oakland Raiders — is “Just Win Baby.” If the Texans keep winning, they will get a week off in the playoffs, but again, there is a lot of competitive football left to be played.