Can Ravens clinch playoff berth Sunday?

The answer to the question posed in the headline: Yes.

The Ravens’ four straight wins have put them in position to wrap up their sixth consecutive playoff berth with one week to go in the regular season.

The scenario is simple. Baltimore beats the Patriots, the Dolphins lose to the Bills and the Chargers lose or tie, and the Ravens will secure at least the sixth seed. Taking care of their own business is the safest route, and could reap bigger rewards.

Now just one game behind the Bengals, the Ravens will win the AFC North if they win out or Cincinnati loses out. They also will win the division crown if they enter the last week still a game behind the Bengals and win the finale at Cincinnati.

Taking the AFC North title could also be paired with the second seed in the conference and a first-round bye. If the Ravens top the Patriots Sunday and New England also loses its finale against the Bills, then Baltimore will have a chance to bypass the wild card round to earn a home playoff game. Baltimore also needs the Colts to go 1-1 or worse the rest of the way to set up a complicated three-way tie at the end of the regular season.

So the Ravens all of a sudden become Buffalo fans for the final two weeks of the regular season. Had Baltimore beaten the Bills earlier this season, none of it would be a concern, but that’s not here nor there.

The Bills are 2-2 over their last four games and will obviously play a big role in how the AFC playoff order shakes out, even though it won’t include them. The Ravens have to hope Buffalo gets hot and puts down the top two teams in the AFC East.