Steelers First-Round Bye: Cheers, Jeers, & Fears
The NFL postseason is about to get underway, and the Steelers have an all-important first-round bye.
While other teams are out in the cold beating each other up this week, Pittsburgh is going to be resting and getting healthy.
Since Pittsburgh doesn’t play this week, my cheers, jeers, and fears focus on the Steelers potential matchups in the upcoming divisional round.
Tennessee squeaked their way into the five spot thanks to a win against Jacksonville and Baltimore’s heartbreaking, but satisfying, loss to the Bungles.
Pittsburgh has already beaten up on Tennessee earlier this season in a 40-17 rout in Heinz Field.
If Tennesse gets past Kansas City, and Buffalo beats Jacksonville, Pittsburgh will host the Titans again for a spot in the AFC Championship game.
I’m cheering this matchup because I don’t have any faith that Tennessee could come into Heinz and pull out a win.
Buffalo beating Jacksonville.
For the first time in 17 years, the Bills are in the NFL Postseason. Congrats, #BillsMafia, you deserve it.
Their reward for making the playoffs is a matchup with the AFC’s darkhorse contender in the Jacksonville Jaguars.
While Jacksonville’s defense is the best in the league, there are still questions about their offense and Blake Bortles.
I would love to see the Bills take out the Jaguars, but this would mean Buffalo would go to Foxboro, and the Patriots would have an easy road to the AFC Championship game.
For the Steelers, a Buffalo win would mean the winner of Kansas City and Tennesse would make their way to the Steel City.
Either one of those is a more favorable matchup than facing the Jaguars again.
If Jacksonville gets past Buffalo, Pittsburgh will face them in the divisional round on Sunday, Jan. 14.
I am terrified to match up with Jacksonville and their vaunted defense again.
We saw it on full display earlier in the season when they picked off Big Ben five times in one game. The Jaguars are also a scary team because they have an excellent running game behind rookie Leonard Fournette.
The combination of a great defense and a good running game is how you win in the playoffs. If Pittsburgh and Jacksonville meet, look for it to be an ugly low-scoring affair.
Apparently, my thoughts differ from Big Ben, who said he wanted to face them again so he could improve off of what might have been the worst game of his career.
Pittsburgh and Jacksonville meeting up is the most likely scenario. The Bills, bless their heart, probably don’t have enough offense to challenge the Jacksonville defense.
Pathetic Blake Bortles will do just enough to push them on to the next round.
On the other side of the bracket, I think Kansas City beats Tennessee to set up a rematch against the Patriots.
Steelers fans can relax and watch it all play out this weekend, but get ready for the heart attacks and swearing to resume next week.