The offseason brings about many things fans can’t stand. Predictions would certainly be high on the list of the most disdained items during the offseason, only to be trumped by Power Rankings, but during the slow months major media outlets crank out content to keep themselves relevant.
I get it. After all, I run this website you’re currently reading, but when I was checking out several of those major media outlets just referenced, I found a Sports Illustrated article which was predicting how teams will finish in 2018. Of course I wanted to see their prediction for the Steelers, and here’s what they had to say about the Black-and-gold.
PITTSBURGH STEELERS: 11–5*
As long as the Steelers have the Killer B’s, they’re going to win this division. Antonio Brown is a top-two (or the top?) receiver in the league, Le’Veon Bell is the best running back in the NFL, and Ben Roethlisberger is the second-best quarterback in the conference. Randy Fichtner replaces Todd Haley as offensive coordinator, but the changes you’ll see should only be minor. The Steelers did well to pick up linebacker Jon Bostic in free agency and nab safety Terrell Edmunds in the draft. Who knows what will happen with Bell in Pittsburgh long-term, but as long as he’s on the field in 2018 for this squad they remain atop the division.
Pivotal game: Week 11 at Jacksonville
The Steelers got thoroughly out-everything’d by the Jags in their two meetings last season. Jacksonville forced seven turnovers, while the Steelers could create just one. The 45–42 final score from their playoff contest is not indicative of how totally in control the Jags were for more than three-and-a-half quarters of the game. Now Pittsburgh has to go on Jacksonville’s turf in hopes of not making it three straight embarrassments.
The 11-5 record is good enough to get the Steelers into the playoffs according to the results in the article, as well as to top the AFC North. Here would be the final standings in the AFC North if these predictions hold true.
Pittsburgh Steelers — 11-5
Baltimore Ravens — 6-10
Cincinnati Bengals — 6-10
Cleveland Browns — 4-12
Talk about a step backwards for the once-proud AFC North division, but if you’re like me, you want to know what the AFC Playoff Picture would look like too.
Here you go, but keep in mind there was no deciphering the difference between all these 11-5 teams:
New England Patriots — 13-3
Pittsburgh Steelers — 11-5
Kansas City Chiefs — 11-5
Los Angeles Chargers — 11-5
Jacksonville Jaguars — 11-5
Houston Texans — 10-6
Okay, back to the question at hand — the Steelers’ overall record.
Do you think the Steelers will win more or less than 11 games this season? Check the schedule closely:
Regular Season Schedule:
Week 1 — 1:00pm at Cleveland Browns
Week 2 — 1:00pm vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Week 3 — 8:15pm at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (MNF)
Week 4 — 8:20pm vs. Baltimore Ravens (SNF)
Week 5 — 1:00pm vs. Atlanta Falcons
Week 6 — 1:00pm at Cincinnati Bengals
Week 7 — BYE
Week 8 — 1:00pm vs. Cleveland Browns
Week 9 — 1:00pm at Baltimore Ravens
Week 10 — 8:20pm vs. Carolina Panthers (TNF)
Week 11 — 8:20pm at Jacksonville Jaguars (SNF)
Week 12 — 4:25pm at Denver Broncos
Week 13 — 1:00pm vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Week 14 — 8:20pm at Oakland Raiders (SNF)
Week 15 — 4:25pm vs. New England Patriots
Week 16 — 4:25pm at New Orleans Saints
Week 17 — 1:00pm vs. Cincinnati Bengals
How do you see the season panning out? The Steelers going over 11 wins, under 11 wins or a push where they finish with 11 wins? Let us know by voting in the poll below, and be sure to explain yourself in the comment section below:
Will the Steelers win more than 11 games in 2018?
This poll is closed
OVER 11 games
UNDER 11 games
PUSH exactly 11 games