The home loss to the Colts finds the Steelers sitting (barely) atop the AFCN with a 6-3 record. The next two games are at home versus the struggling Chargers of San Diego and the ever-hapless Cincinnati Bengals. These are games the Steelers simply must win if they harbor thoughts of playing deep into the playoffs in the new year.
After these two relative cream puffs the going gets tougher with 3 of the final 5 games on the road at New England, Baltimore and Tennessee. The Patriots remain a tough out even sans Beardy. Flacco seems to be improving for the Ravens. And the Titans from Tennessee remain unbeaten. When their run game is stuffed their QB has proven the offense will still score points. While none of these teams should prove overpowering for the tough Steelers defense, they will all make it tough on Big Ben and the boys. There’s no walk in the park among these three.
The remaining two of the final 5 will be at Heinz field against the Dallas Cowboys and the Fighting Quinns of Cleveland. While the Cowboys have been on a sharp slide of late, by the time they roll into Pittsburgh Tony Romo will have been back for a few games. The regular season wraps with the Brownstains.
So while there will be plenty of opportunities to win down the road, the best of these will be at Heinz field over the next two weeks. After that the Steelers will have to depend on some lucky bounces because it’s clear they cannot depend on their offense when it counts the most.