NFL Postseason: Ravens are kings in the AFC and the league

Baltimore Ravens v San Francisco 49ers
Baltimore Ravens v San Francisco 49ers / Loren Elliott/GettyImages

The Ravens had already clinched a postseason berth last weekend following their victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, and after beating the San Francisco 49ers on the road on Christmas night, 33-19, they own the best record in the NFL with a sublime 12-3 through Week 16.

Nothing changed at the top of the AFC pecking order with Baltimore and Miami still leading the race with the only two secured playoff berths among conference teams to date.

The Ravens are one game clear of the Miami Dolphins (11-4) with their upcoming Week 17 matchup scheduled for next Sunday.

Cleveland's win last Sunday followed by Kansas City's loss on Monday flipped both franchises in the winning record percentage, but the Browns (10-5) are still in possession of the no. 5 seed as they trail the Ravens in the AFC North.

The Chiefs and the Bills both share a 9-6 record, but the Bills are below the Browns as they are also trailing a division leader in Miami, thus leaving the Jacksonville Jaguars (8-7) in possession of the no. 4 seed.

If the Ravens secure a win next weekend at M&T Bank Stadium when they host the Dolphins, then Baltimore will clinch the no. 1 seed in the AFC and earn a bye week with one game to play in the regular season, a finale against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Jan. 7.

If the Ravens lose to Miami, however, the Dolphins would take possession of the no. 1 seed by virtue of head-to-head advantage and Baltimore would then need to beat Pittsburgh and hope for a loss by the Dolphins in the last game of the season when they will host Buffalo.

The Dolphins are entering Week 17 hot coming off their best win of the season against a fellow Super Bowl contender in the Dallas Cowboys, beating them 22-20 on Sunday.

Next. Kyle Hamilton leaves with knee injury, Ravens can't afford to lose him. Kyle Hamilton leaves with knee injury, Ravens can't afford to lose him. dark

Entering next weekend, per the New York Times model, the Ravens have a 74% probability of finishing first, a 23% chance of finishing with a top-4 seed, and only a 3% probability of ending the regular season as the road team in the wild-card game.

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