With the Cincinnati Bengals securing a 23-16 win over the Arizona Cardinals, all eyes focused on the battle of New York between the Giants and Jets on Christmas Eve. Thanks to a 99-yard Victor Cruz touchdown reception from Eli Manning in the second quarter, giving the Giants a 10-7 lead, the New York Jets’ eventual 29-14 loss on Saturday has given the Cincinnati Bengals the sixth spot in the wild card race with one regular season game remaining.
The Bengals are the only 9-6 team vying for the second wild card spot, controlling their own destiny heading into the final weekend of the regular season.
The Baltimore Ravens, who beat the Cleveland Browns 20-14, and the Pittsburgh Steelers, who beat the St. Louis Rams 27-0, are having their own battle for the AFC North crown heading into week 17. Ravens control it with a win, no matter what Pittsburgh does, after Baltimore swept the Steelers head-to-head this season.
The Ravens will have to go through the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium next Sunday.
If the Bengals lose, the Jets beating the Dolphins will knock the Bengals out of the playoffs, so it will be a must-win regardless because the more teams that enter the wild card picture, the less likely Cincinnati’s chances are to secure the playoff this year.
If the Bengals win, they’re in the playoffs.