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A Letter From the Editor: When it comes to rooting interest in the playoffs, it gets complicated

The Pittsburgh Steelers are not in the NFL Playoffs, and since I’ll be watching the postseason, might as well explain who I will, and won’t, be pulling for in these Divisional Round games.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

During the regular season we here at BTSC put out a “Who Steelers fans should be rooting for” article every week. The theory behind this article is to give fans an idea as to why they should be rooting for a specific team that given week.

Sometimes it is based on the division standings, the playoff race or maybe even the pure vitriol the fan base might have towards at team like the New England Patriots.

Either way, fans always have a reason for who they root for outside of the Pittsburgh Steelers game any given week. But when the playoffs roll around and the Steelers aren’t participating, things get dicey.

Just this morning, while celebrating my oldest daughter’s birthday, I was asked by a family member who I was pulling for in the NFL Playoffs since the Steelers weren’t in it. My answer was quick and precise...

“Anyone but the Baltimore Ravens.”

Everyone laughed, I didn’t, and someone said, “But don’t you want to root for a team from your division?”


But the more I thought about it, when it comes to who I am rooting for in the games this weekend, my absolute favorite weekend of football, it gets complicated as to why I may want a team to win, while I want another team to lose.

So, let’s go through the games and I’ll explain who I am rooting for, and against, in the action Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday, 4:35 p.m. ET

Minnesota Vikings at San Francisco 49ers

I am rooting for the Vikings in this game. I have always felt Kirk Cousins never got a fair shake at quarterback, and always liked him when I saw him covered a ton while he played for Washington. As a Maryland resident the “You like that?!” slogan was always funny to me. On the other side of the docket, the 49ers have 5 Super Bowl wins. No need to threaten the Steelers’ six I’ll be rooting against Jimmy G and company.

Saturday, 8:15 p.m. ET

Tennessee Titans at Baltimore Ravens

Talk about a slam dunk. The Titans eliminated the Patriots last week (YEAH!), and now have the chance to knock off the Ravens. Nothing would make me happier than the Ravens to be one-and-done in the postseason. Go Titans!

Sunday, 3:05 p.m. ET

Houston Texans at Kansas City Chiefs

Talk about a game I really don’t care about one way or another. The Texans have J.J. Watt on their team, who I like, and Deshaun Watson seems like a stand-up guy. Meanwhile, Patrick Mahomes is a lot of fun to watch, and they possess the best chance to beat the Ravens if the Titans can’t get the job done on Saturday. However, I have always had a disdain for Andy Reid after he decided to bench his entire team in 2013, and Ryan Succop missed the field goal against the Chargers keeping the Steelers out of the postseason. I really don’t care who wins this game...

Sunday, 6:45 p.m. ET

Seattle Seahawks at Green Bay Packers

I always laugh at Seahawks fans when they still complain about Super Bowl 40. Talk about crying over spilled milk, and before you say the Steelers still complain about Super Bowl 30, don’t bring logic into this discussion! As for the Packers, Aaron Rodgers and company were the ones who denied the Steelers of victory in Super Bowl 45. Since then I’ve despised Rodgers and his stupid “championship belt” celebration. I hope they lose. Go Seahawks.

As you can see, my sick and twisted mind sure does have a funny way of picking who to root for in playoff games, but that is how my mind works. Who are you rooting for in the games this weekend? Let us know in the comment section below, and be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold as they prepare for yet another lengthy offseason.