Four things we learned about the AFC East

December, 9, 2012
12/09/12
7:32
PM ET
The AFC East blog will be in Foxborough, Mass., in Week 14 for the huge game between the Houston Texans and New England Patriots on "Monday Night Football."

The other three AFC East teams were in action Sunday. Here are some things we learned about the division this weekend:

1. It could be the last days for Chan Gailey

The Buffalo Bills lost another close game Sunday, 15-12 to the St. Louis Rams, and it once again puts Buffalo's head coach in question. This defeat was on Chan Gailey. The Bills' coach made several poor decisions that kept the Rams in the game in the second half, and St. Louis took advantage by scoring the game-winning touchdown with less than a minute remaining. Gailey, who also calls the offensive plays, gave tailback C.J. Spiller only seven carries and refused to go for two points when leading 12-7. The team wound up botching the extra point. The Bills have lost four games by seven points or fewer, and often it comes down to Gailey being outcoached or out-thinking himself in key moments. Bills general manager Buddy Nix recently backed his head coach. But Gailey is 15-30 in three seasons. The position must be evaluated at the end of the season.

2. Jets amazingly are still in it

Despite all the Jets have been through this year, they are only one game out of the final wild-card spot in the AFC. That is simply amazing. The Jets won their second straight game with a 17-10 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars. New York is 2-0 in the crucial month of December and improved to 6-7 overall. The Jets also received a boost with both the Pittsburgh Steelers (7-6) and Cincinnati Bengals (7-6) losing on Sunday. The Jets have suffered through the Tim Tebow saga, season-ending injuries to corner Darrelle Revis and receiver Santonio Holmes, and Mark Sanchez being benched -- among other things. Through it all the Jets still have a shot at the playoffs with three weeks left in the season. Of the three teams, New York also has the easiest schedule.

3. Miami struggling in December

The Miami Dolphins were thinking playoffs two weeks ago following a win over the Seattle Seahawks. The game capped the end of November and Miami had a 5-6 record. However, a brutal schedule in December loomed for Miami. The San Francisco 49ers beat the Dolphins 27-13 Sunday to hand Miami its second loss in a row. Miami also lost to the Patriots last week. Miami is now 5-8 and has no realistic chance of chasing the final wild-card spot in the final three weeks. The Dolphins are playing for only pride and the development of rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

4. Patriots get an assist

Week 14 started with a three-way tie for the second-best record in the AFC. On Thursday, the Denver Broncos (10-3) set the pace with a victory over the Oakland Raiders. But New England (9-3) got a key assist on Sunday. The Baltimore Ravens (9-4) dropped a road game in overtime to the Washington Redskins. This was big because the Patriots dropped the head-to-head tiebreaker to Baltimore earlier this season. New England owns the head-to-head advantage over the Broncos and can have sole possession of the No. 2 seed with a win Monday over the talented Texans (11-1). On the line is a first-round bye. That will be important with so many talented teams in the AFC.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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