The top of the AFC playoff picture couldn’t be any tighter as Week 13 of the 2021 NFL season comes to a close. The New England Patriots (8-4), Tennessee Titans (8-4), Baltimore Ravens (8-4) and Kansas City Chiefs (8-4) are all tied atop the conference standings.

The race for the No. 1 seed will take another turn Monday night when the Patriots visit the Buffalo Bills (7-4). A win for New England will give it sole possession of the conference’s top spot. If Buffalo wins, the Bills will take over first place in the AFC East and replace the Patriots in the four-way tie.

The Bills enter Monday night as the AFC’s No. 5 seed. The Patriots were last defeated in Week 6, riding a six-game winning streak to the top of the conference standings.

Kansas City was the only team in the group to win a game Sunday. The Chiefs beat the Denver Broncos (6-6) with a 22-9 victory, extending their winning streak to five games. Kansas City’s defense has led the way during that stretch, allowing 11.2 points per game.

Kansas City has won five straight division titles and made three straight appearances in the AFC Championship Game. The Chiefs are a game ahead of the Los Angeles Chargers (7-5) for first place in the AFC West.

The Chargers upset the Cincinnati Bengals (7-5) Sunday, moving ahead of them in the latest playoff standings. Los Angeles and Cincinnati have the AFC’s final two playoff berths.

The Pittsburgh Steelers (6-5-1) are a half-game behind the Bengals as the No. 8 seed in the conference. Pittsburgh upset the Ravens 20-19 Sunday, escaping with a win when Baltimore failed to convert a two-point conversion in the final seconds.

The Ravens entered Week 13 with sole possession of the No. 1 seed. Lamar Jackson and Baltimore’s offense continue to struggle, scoring fewer than 20 points in four straight games.

Tennessee had a bye in Week 13. The Titans have a 1.5-game lead over the Indianapolis Colts (7-6) atop the AFC South. Indianapolis is the No. 9 seed after shutting out the Houston Texans (2-10) on Sunday. 

The Las Vegas Raiders (6-6), Cleveland Browns (6-6) and Denver are all one game out of the last wild-card spot.

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes scrambles out of the pocket against the Dallas Cowboys in the second quarter of their NFL game at Arrowhead Stadium Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes scrambles out of the pocket against the Dallas Cowboys in the second quarter of their NFL game at Arrowhead Stadium Photo: GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA via AFP / David Eulitt