Steelers’ path to playoffs


Andy, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Stylized image of a Pittsburgh Steelers helmet sitting on a grass field.

Matthew Scabilloni, Sports Editor

According to’s Football Power Index (FPI), the Pittsburgh Steelers are currently given an 8% chance to make the playoffs.

The way the Steelers get into the playoffs with this slim chance is first and foremost by winning at Baltimore.

Then, they need the Jacksonville Jaguars to beat the Indianapolis Colts.

Finally, they need the Sunday night matchup between the Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders to not end up in a tie.

For the Steelers to accomplish the first feat of beating the Ravens, they need to do what they did on Monday night. Najee Harris needs to run downhill all game long getting the tough yards, and Ben Roethlisberger needs to play a clean game with no turnovers and make the right plays.

The Steelers also need the defense to play as well as they did on Monday night, which is no small feat when playing against former MVP Lamar Jackson.

T.J. Watt needs to step up in this game for two reasons: to help bring the Steelers the much-needed win and break the single-season sack record. He only needs one sack to tie the record and one-and-a-half to have the record all to himself.

Even if all goes as planned for Pittsburgh, the Steelers still need the Jaguars (2-14) to beat the Colts (9-7).

For the Jaguars to win, they need to do two things.  First, they need to stop MVP candidate Jonothan Taylor from running wild on the Jaguars’ defense.  Second, they need their No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence to have his best performance of the season. This is the hardest thing the Steelers need to happen, but it’s not impossible because the Jaguars in their last six games at home against the Colts have won every game.

If both of these things happen, all the Steelers need is anything but a tie in the Chargers vs. Raiders game. Of the three ingredients for Pittsburgh to make the playoffs, this is probably the most likely to occur.

The way the Steelers could get screwed over by this game is if the Raiders and Chargers agree to kneel every play of the game and end in a tie. Although, that scenario is highly unlikely.

The Steelers have a very slim possibility of being in the playoffs this year, but anything is possible.