A rare set of back-to-back December losses have the New England Patriots (9-5) in as vulnerable a state as we've seen them in years.
With today's 17-10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Houston Texans (10-4) have passed the Patriots (9-5) for the No. 2 seed in the playoff standings.
The Patriots never had the lead in their game against the Steelers, falling behind 7-0 early before tying the game up in the first quarter.
But the Steelers took the lead again in the second quarter and never gave it up.
The loss, following last week's "Miami Miracle" loss to the Miami Dolphins (7-7), marked the first time in over a decade that the Patriots have lost back-to-back games in the month of December.
The five losses are also the most by any Patriots team since 2009, when they finished 10-6.
The Patriots' remaining games will be at home against AFC East rivals the Buffalo Bills (5-9) and New York Jets (4-10).