Texans' win & Patriots' effect

November, 22, 2012
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The Houston Texans' 34-31 overtime win over the Detroit Lions naturally has a trickle-down effect for the New England Patriots in the AFC playoff picture.

The victory improves the Texans to 10-1. The Patriots enter tonight’s game against the Jets at 7-3.

Had the Texans lost -- and the Lions certainly had their chances to put them away -- it could have potentially set up a scenario where the Patriots-Texans game in Foxborough on Dec. 10 gave New England an inside track for a first-round playoff bye.

Instead, the Texans maintain a two-game cushion at this time, with the Ravens (8-2) and Broncos (7-3) also in the mix. The Patriots would lose a tie-breaker with the Ravens (based on head-to-head loss) and would win a tie-breaker with the Broncos (based on head-to-head win).

Texans remaining schedule
Dec. 2 – at Titans
Dec. 10 – at Patriots
Dec. 16 – vs. Colts
Dec. 23 – vs. Vikings
Dec. 30 – at Colts

Patriots remaining schedule
Nov. 22 – at Jets
Dec. 2 – at Miami
Dec. 10 – vs. Houston
Dec. 16 – vs. San Francisco
Dec. 23 – at Jaguars
Dec. 30 – vs. Dolphins

Ravens remaining schedule
Nov. 25 -- at Chargers
Dec. 2 -- vs. Steelers
Dec. 9 -- at Redskins
Dec. 16 -- vs. Broncos
Dec. 23 -- vs. Giants
Dec. 30 -- at Bengals

Broncos remaining schedule
Nov. 25 -- at Chiefs
Dec. 2 -- vs. Buccaneers
Dec. 6 -- at Raiders
Dec. 16 -- at Ravens
Dec. 23 -- vs. Browns
Dec. 30 -- vs. Chiefs

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter



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