The Steelers have alternated wins and losses in their first five games of the season, on their way to a 3-2 record. Pittsburgh is tied with Baltimore in the middle of the AFC North, a half game behind the first-pace Bengals and a half-game ahead of the last-place Browns.
The division race is close, and the Steelers are going to finish better than 8-8 if they want to avoid missing the playoffs for the third straight year. Will head coach Mike Tomlin be able to lead this team back to the postseason?
Oct. 12 @ Cleveland
Pittsburgh survived a furious second-half rally by the Browns to win their previous matchup on a game-winning field goal as time expired, but the Steelers dominated most of that game. Even though the game is in Cleveland, I expect Pittsburgh to take a big early lead that the Browns won't be able to overcome.
Oct. 20 vs Houston
The Steelers' defense has struggled so far this year, but Houston's offense has looked terrible with Ryan Fitzpatrick under center. Big Ben should be able to score enough points to win this one.
Oct. 26 vs Indianapolis
While Fitzpatrick won't able to exploit the Steelers' defense, Andrew Luck will. The Colts should win this one easily.
Nov. 2 vs Baltimore
These two sides usually play tight games that are decided by a field goal or less, and the Steelers will be looking to get revenge for their 20-point loss to the Ravens in Week 2. Expect Pittsburgh to pull this one out late.
Nov. 9 @ New York Jets
The Jets are an absolute mess, and neither Geno Smith nor Mike Vick look like the answer to their quarterback situation. This should be an easy win for the Steelers.
Nov. 17 @ Tennessee
The Titans are the latest weak team on Pittsburgh's schedule, and the Steelers will gladly take it. Tennessee is good enough to make the game interesting, but Pittsburgh is much better offensively and will simply outscore the Titans.
Nov. 30 vs New Orleans
We all know how bad New Orleans is on the road. However, the Saints will be desperate for a win, and Drew Brees is good enough to pick apart Pittsburgh's defense.
Dec. 7 @ Cincinnati
The Bengals have been the class of the AFC North the past few years, but the Steelers and Ravens are still viewed as the cornerstones of the division. Cincy will play with a chip on their shoulder and win by double-digits.
Dec. 14 @ Atlanta
The Falcons are a much better team at home than they are on the road, and they'll be desperate for a win to keep them in the playoff mix. I'd expect Matt Ryan to have a big day in leading Atlanta to the win.
Dec. 21 vs Kansas City
The Chiefs and Steelers are very similar teams, but Kansas City has a much better defense and better offensive weapons. They'll win this one by double-digits, putting the Steelers on the playoff bubble.
Dec. 28 vs Cincinnati
This game will be for Pittsburgh's playoff hopes, in which case you'd want a proven quarterback like Ben Roethlisberger under center. He'll lead the Steelers to an upset victory with a game-winning drive late, with the Bengals playing conservatively with their starters.
That'll give Pittsburgh one of the wild card spots, saving them from what would be an awful end-of-season collapse. Their schedule is easy for the next few weeks and then hard late, so expect the Steelers to start racking up the wins pretty quickly.
How do you think the Steelers will finish the season? Will they make the playoffs? Tweet your thoughts to @brauf33 and leave a response in the comments!Back to the Pittsburgh Steelers Newsfeed