The Steelers slipped into the playoffs behind the Bengals, and then used the playoffs to remind them exactly who was in charge in the AFC North. This season was a reminder to everyone that the Steelers are still a relevant franchise that are capable of competing with the big guns. Going out to the Broncos is nothing to be ashamed of, especially if they beat the Patriots for the Divisional title. With the latest title chase finished, it’s time for them to look forwards to the next season, and who they will be facing for their next run at the playoffs.
Easy win Cleveland Browns Cleveland are drafting in the top two again. Time for another QB, and another year trying to stop people snapping him in half. The Steelers love playing against the Browns, and can pretty much count them as wins before the season even starts. With these games in the pocket already, Pittsburgh can look at their opponents elsewhere in the competition, and focus on training for those. Hard hitting Baltimore Ravens Baltimore managed to upset the apple cart for the Steelers last season, and pulled the rug out from under them as they came into the final two weeks for the division crown. With an injured Baltimore managing to push them off of the field, the Steelers could well be getting a battering when the Ravens return next season, with a fully healed roster, and some tasty draft picks. Prime time New England Patriots Facing off against Brady and co next season is bound to draw a big crowd. That’s where a lot of people wanted the playoffs to go, and with the Broncos beating them to the punch, the Steelers will be chomping at the bit to prove that the Patriots can’t handle the wrath of the terrible towel. If the Steelers can manage to best the Patriots in Pittsburgh, then they can prove that they still have what it takes. Next season shows some real promise for the Pittsburgh residents. With some games against some big teams set up, this will be a real challenge for them, and if they can make it through the regular season unscathed, then this could well be a season where they go all the way. Are Pittsburgh Super Bowl material? Very nearly.