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AFC Playoff Picture: How the Pittsburgh Steelers can still make the playoffs

The Pittsburgh Steelers were dealt a crippling blow by losing to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 16, but their playoff hopes are still alive. Here is what needs to happen for them to make the playoffs.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers were dealt a crippling blow in Week 16 as they lost 20-17 to the Baltimore Ravens, and now are on the outside looking in, in regards to the AFC Playoff Picture. With the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs both winning in Week 16, the Steelers playoff hopes are on life support, but are far from dead. Take a look at the AFC Playoff Picture heading into Week 17:

1. New England Patriots - BYE
2. Cincinnati Bengals - BYE

3. Denver Broncos
6. New York Jets

4. Houston Texans
5. Kansas City Chiefs

In the hunt:
7. Pittsburgh Steelers

If the Steelers are to get into the playoffs for the second straight season, there are two scenarios which can take place for the Steelers to make the postseason:

Scenario 1:

In Week 17:
Buffalo Bills defeat the New York Jets +
Steelers victory

Scenario 2:

In Week 16: 
Cincinnati Bengals defeat the Denver Broncos

In Week 17:
San Diego Chargers defeat the Denver Broncos +
Steelers victory

With the Chiefs beating the Cleveland Browns in Week 16, they have clinched their playoff spot, making their Week 17 game against the Oakland Raiders meaningless.

The Steelers now have lost complete control of their own destiny, and will need to rely on others helping their cause to make the 2015 AFC Playoffs. In terms of losses, the 20-17 loss to the Ravens is among one of the worst in recent memory.