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Steelers Fan Rooting Guide: Who Steelers fans may want to root for in other games in Week 17

BTSC’s guide to the other weekend games that might impact the Steelers the most.

Buffalo Bills v Miami Dolphins Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Steelers are scheduled to play the 10-5 Cleveland Browns on Sunday and a win is no longer important as the division is already in hand for the Steelers. However, there are plenty of games that are crucial to their playoff hopes, in and out of the division. Most of the time, Steelers fans know who to root for. But here’s a guide to significant matchups, and whose losses Pittsburgh would benefit more from this weekend. Once again, the black-and-gold need to win for this wish list to be viable. But any edge on the competition in the AFC is welcome.

Here are the conference standings going in to Week 17

x-clinched playoff berth, y-clinched division, z-clinched conference

  1. xyz Kansas City Chiefs (No change) 14-1: Won AFC West and earned a bye in Round 1
  2. xy Buffalo Bills (No change) 12-3: Won AFC East and would host Cleveland in Round 1
  3. xy Pittsburgh Steelers (No change) 12-3: Won AFC North and would host Baltimore in Round 1
  4. Tennessee Titans (No change) 10-5: Would win AFC South and host Miami in Round 1
  5. Miami Dolphins (+2) 10-5: Would earn the first Wild Card and travel to Tennessee
  6. Baltimore Ravens 10-5 (+2) Would earn the second Wild Card and travel to Pittsburgh
  7. Cleveland Browns (-1) 10-5: Would earn the third Wild Card and travel to Bufflo
  8. Indianapolis Colts (-3) 10-5
  9. Las Vegas Raiders (No change) 7-8
  10. e New England Patriots (No change) 6-9
  11. e Los Angeles Chargers (+1) 6-9
  12. e Denver Broncos (-1) 5-10
  13. e Cincinnati Bengals (+1) 4-10-1
  14. e Houston Texans (-1) 4-11
  15. e New York Jets (No Change) 2-13
  16. e Jacksonville Jaguars (-1) 1-14

All of the following contests are of no consequence to the NFL Postseason fortunes of the Steelers or any other team. So it’s up to the individual. But I’ll give my two cents regardless.

New York Jets at New England Patriots - Sunday 1:00 PM

I’m always going to root against New England. So conventional wisdom says that I should be pulling for the Jets. I’m not though. I’m only going to say New England for the sake of draft order. A win gives the Belichickians a lesser draft pick. Those of you that are hoping that the Steelers will do the unlikely and trade for Sam Darnold, should root against the Jets for them to have a higher chance of drafting a QB and dealing Darnold.

Who to root for: Rooter’s Choice

Who for the author to root for: New England

Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs - Sunday 4:25 PM

The Chiefs losing might benefit Kansas City more by getting the loss out of the way, but I still can’t root for them. I can’t stand the thought of this team repeating. So I’m going to listen to the Rooting Guide and go with KC. Perish the thought.

Who to root for: Rooter’s Choice

Who for the author to root for: Kansas City

Las Vegas Raiders at Denver Broncos - Sunday 4:25 PM

I can’t think of a good reason to root for any of these guys.

Who to root for: Rooter’s Choice

Who for the author to root for: My wife to insist that I binge watch a cooking show instead

Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills - Sunday 1:00 PM

The Dolphins are a team that would be a favorable first round opponent, but the odds are slim that they would clash with Pittsburgh in Round 1. But really, the most important thing here is the possibility still existing of the Steelers earning the second seed in the AFC. The Steelers winning and the Bills losing would assure that.

Who to root for: Miami Dolphins

Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals - Sunday 1:00PM

The Ravens win and are in. Unfortunately they are going to play the Bungles, so they are probably making the playoffs. But you still want these guys to lose. But be careful what you wish for. Scenarios exist for the Ravens losing and still meeting up with the Steelers in Round 1. I would find that mind numbing.

Who to root for: Cincinnati Bengals

Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans - Sunday 4:25 PM

If a scenario existed in which the Titans lost and still made the playoffs, I would root for that. Like last week, I’d like to see the Titans play Buffalo or KC in the postseason. It could be more likely to happen should Tennessee get the Wild Card.

Who to root for: Houston Texans

Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts - Sunday 4:25 PM

The only team to fall to Jacksonville was Indy in Week 1. the two teams saw their 2020 slate bookend with one another. The Colts winning doesn’t hurt the Steelers cause. It could benefit it more with the above scenario.

Who to root for: Indianapolis Colts

Who do you like in these games for yinzer’s sake? Let us know in the comment section in this article or on BTSC social media, and if you want more explanation to these picks check out the new Rooting Guide podcast below: