Each game that the Steelers take the field, it’s about winning and not losing. That doesn’t always occur, but with the goal always being the playoffs... the other games become about seeding and matchups. Even though it’s not the black-and-gold playing and the playoffs still seem unlikely, other contests besides Pittsburgh vs. Seattle still matter to Steelers Nation and we assume the Steelers will start winning more for the sake of this exercise. Here’s a guide to other significant matchups, and whose losses the Steelers would benefit from more.
Here are the current Power Rankings:
- Buffalo Bills 4-1 (Last Week: 1 - No change)
- Los Angeles Chargers 4-1 (Last Week: 4 - Up 2 spots)
- Baltimore Ravens 4-1 (Last Week: 4 - Up 1 spot)
- Cleveland Browns 3-2 (Last Week: 3 - Down 1 spot)
- Kansas City Chiefs 2-3 (Last Week: 6 - No change)
- Cincinnati Bengals 3-2 (Last Week 7: Up 1 spot)
- Tennessee Titans 3-2 (Last Week: 9 - Up 2 spots)
- Denver Broncos 3-2 (Last Week: 8 - Down 1 spot)
- New England Patriots 2-3 (Last Week: 10 - Up 1 spot)
- Las Vegas Raiders 3-2 (Last Week: 5 - Down 5 spots)
- Pittsburgh Steelers 2-3 (Last Week: 12 - Up 1 spot)
- Indianapolis Colts 1-4 (Last Week: 11 - Down 1 spot)
- Miami Dolphins 1-4 (Last Week: 13 - No Change)
- New York Jets 1-4 (Last Week: 14 - No Change)
- Houston Texans 1-4 (Last Week: 15 - No Change )
- Jacksonville Jaguars 0-5 (Last Week: 16 - No Change)
Sunday, Oct. 17
Miami Dolphins at Jacksonville Jaguars (London) - Sunday 9:30 AM (CBS)
Urban Meyer takes his party across the pond and his Jaguars aren’t an A-list event. The Dolphins are a mess as well, but they actually have more upside than their Northern Florida counterparts. With Tua possibly coming back, they could be reemerging. For rooting guide sake, you go against the team that could eventually be the bigger threat to your playoff chances.
Who to root for: Jacksonville Jaguars
Los Angeles Chargers at Baltimore Ravens - Sunday 1 PM (CBS)
Some teams are cursed and some are charmed. The Ratbirds seem to have a horseshoe firmly inserted up the 53 collective rectums. The Chargers are really good and look to be the surprise favorites in the AFC West. The Steelers and the rest of the AFC North need the Ravens to plummet back down to Earth and I frankly want to see that free fall happen in embarrassing fashion at home. If the Chargers are indeed for real, they need to show it this weekend.
Who to root for: Los Angeles Chargers
Cincinnati Bengals at Detroit Lions - Sunday 1 PM (FOX)
Detroit almost helped out the Rooting Guide before but got hosed by the officials and an epic Justin Tucker Field Goal against Baltimore in Motown. Cincinnati is another team that needs to be embarrassed to bust their momentum. It’s not likely to happen, but the Rooting Guide challenges you to will it to happen.
Who to root for: Detroit Lions
Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts - Sunday 1 PM (CBS)
The Colts came close to appeasing the Rooting Guide Gods last week against Baltimore, but could not kick their way out of a paper bag. Rodrigo Blankenship, you have angered the RG powers that be. The struggling Colts are capable of getting it together and could emerge as a threat to the Steelers.
Who to root for: Houston Texans
Kansas City Chiefs at Washington Football Team - Sunday 1 PM (CBS)
Do any of us really think that the Chiefs are done at 2-3? If we have any hope for a Steelers rebound, you have to think that the two-time defending AFC Champs will get it together as well. But for Steelers’ sake, Go Team!
Who to root for: Washington Football Team
Arizona Cardinals at Cleveland Browns - Sunday 4:05 PM (FOX)
Just like the Chargers traveling across country, I worry about the Cardinals doing the same thing. But the fact that it’s a 4:05 PM game helps the birds. The Browns have fire power and look like they can score at will at times. The Cards are 5-0 and the hope is that they can keep it going. Should the Steelers win and the Browns lose, they could be even at 3-3.
Who to root for: Arizona Cardinals
Las Vegas Raiders at Denver Broncos - Sunday 4:25 PM (CBS)
The Raiders were beginning their descent before the Jon Gruden email scandal. The Broncos might not be as good as their 3-0 start either. But the head-to-head loss against Vegas means that the Steelers lose a tiebreaker for postseason admission, so root for Mile High here.
Who to root for: Denver Broncos
Dallas Cowboys at New England Patriots - Sunday 4:25 PM (CBS)
This game is tough for Steelers fans because of their loathing for the Cowboys, but the Pats need to slide deeper down the AFC and remember that you loathe the Massh#&$s even more.
Who to root for: Dallas Cowboys
Buffalo Bills at Tennessee Titans - Monday 8:15 PM (ESPN)
Here’s where the RG gets interesting and goes against typical fan wisdom. The Bills are likely running away with the East. But even though the Titans are the favorites in the South, the Colts could still challenge them. The biggest threat to a playoff spot or seeding could be the Titans. So as much as it stinks to cheer for the circlers of the wagons and Bills Mafia, the Rooting Guide says so.
Who to root for: Buffalo Bills
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. If you want more explanation to these picks check out the new Rooting Guide podcast below: