clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

AFC Playoff Picture: Who the Steelers should be rooting for in Week 12

New, comments

The Steelers travel to play the Seahawks in Week 12, but who should they be rooting for to help enhance their chances of a postseason berth in the AFC? We give you the breakdown.

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are currently in the 5th seed in the AFC Playoff Picture, but with 6 weeks left in the regular season a lot can change. The players are focused on the "one week at a time" philosophy, solely focused on the Seattle Seahawks, but for fans, they can scoreboard watch as much as necessary.

So, who should Steelers fans be rooting for? Let me try to outline the outcomes and what they could mean for Pittsburgh in Week 12, as there are a lot of huge AFC games taking place across the landscape.

Buffalo Bills (5-5) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (5-5)

The Bills are currently in the pack of teams who are 5-5 and are on the outside looking in. The Chiefs, who own a much better AFC record than Pittsburgh, as well as the head-to-head victory, are a team who could knock the Steelers out of the postseason if there was a tie between the two teams. The Bills are a team with a much more difficult schedule remaining, so in this game root for the Bills.

New York Jets (5-5) vs. Miami Dolphins (4-6)

The Jets were a major threat in the AFC Playoff race before dropping a series of games the past few weeks. The Dolphins have been on a slide of their own as they lost in Week 11 to the Cowboys to drop their schedule below the .500 mark. Sometimes, when it comes to rooting interest, you have to pull for the team who simply has less wins than the other team. This is the case in this matchup. Root for the Dolphins to try and knock the Jets further down the ladder in hopes of making the Steelers' route to the postseason smoother.

New Orleans Saints (4-6) vs. Houston Texans (5-5)

The Texans were once left for dead, but have been revitalized after back-to-back victories over Cincinnati and New York they are back in the mix, not just in the AFC South race, but also in the AFC Playoff Picture. The Texans are a team that is heating up at the right time, and the Saints need a victory as well. Always root against teams who might be competition for Pittsburgh, so root for Drew Breees and the Saints.

New England Patriots (10-0) vs. Denver Broncos (8-2)

The Patriots are about to clinch a postseason berth in a few weeks, and the Broncos could delay that process if they are able to defeat the Patriots in Week 12. Brock Osweiler will be in charge of the Broncos' offense, as Peyton Manning rests his injured foot, and the Denver defense will be responsible for slowing down Tom Brady and his rag-tag offense. The Patriots' injuries have been vast, but they continue to win. If the Patriots are able to beat the Broncos, and the Steelers continue to win, there is a small chance if the Steelers could claim the AFC North they could be the No. 2 seed. That is a long-shot at best, but the hope is still there with 6 games remaining. A Patriots loss doesn't do much to the Steelers, besides make everyone in Steelers Nation smile, so it pains me to say it, but root for the Patriots.

No-Brainers:

Indianapolis Colts (5-5) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-5)

Root for the Buccaneers.

Oakland Raiders (4-6) vs. Tennessee Titans (2-8)

Root for the Titans.

Cincinnati Bengals (8-2) vs. St. Louis Rams (4-6)

Root for the Rams.

Root for both teams to lose (if only that were possible):

Cleveland Browns (2-8) vs. Baltimore Ravens (3-7)