The Pittsburgh Steelers cannot be eliminated from the 2023 NFL playoffs, no matter what happens in Week 16.
The Steelers face the Cincinnati Bengals at Acrisure Stadium on Saturday, in the third game of the weekend, and while their chances of making the postseason, currently at about 3%, according to the New York Times, will be nearly none if they lose, they won’t be technically eliminated.
The Steelers’ playoffs odds were rocked last week with their 30-13 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, followed by a Sunday where they got no help at all from around the NFL.
That being said, if the Steelers do want to make the postseason, beating the Bengals would be an important first step. Their odds of making it to the postseason will more than double with a win over Cincinnati.
If the Steelers beat the Bengals and win each of their other two remaining games, they would not be able to finish behind Cincinnati thanks to them owning head-to-head and divisional tiebreakers.
The Steelers are currently the No. 10 seed in the AFC, but they can claw their way back into playoff position this weekend, if things go well. If the Steelers beat the Bengals, the Atlanta Falcons beat the Indianapolis Colts, the Cleveland Browns beat the Houston Texans and the Los Angeles Chargers beat the Buffalo Bills, the Steelers would be back in a playoff spot by afternoon on Christmas Eve.
How about that for a holiday present?
Either way, the Steelers playoff hopes will persist into Week 17, but they can make their path a good bit less rocky with a win and some help this weekend.
AFC PLAYOFF PICTURE
1 Baltimore Ravens 11-3
2 Miami Dolphins 10-4
3 Kansas City Chiefs 9-5
4 Jacksonville Jaguars 8-6
5 Cleveland Browns 9-5
6 Cincinnati Bengals 8-6
7 Indianapolis Colts 8-6
8 Houston Texans 8-6
9 Buffalo Bills 8-6
10 Pittsburgh Steelers 7-7
11 Denver Broncos 7-7
12 Las Vegas Raiders 6-8
13 Los Angeles Chargers 5-9
14 Tennessee Titans 5-9
15 New York Jets 5-9
16 New England Patriots 3-11
WEEK 16 AFC SCHEDULE
Saturday, Dec. 23
4:30 p.m. Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers
8 p.m. Buffalo Bills at Los Angeles Chargers
Sunday, Dec. 24
1 p.m. Indianapolis Colts at Atlanta Falcons
1 p.m. Cleveland Browns at Houston Texans
4:05 p.m. Jacksonville Jaguars at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
4:25 p.m. Dallas Cowboys at Miami Dolphins
8:15 p.m. New England Patriots at Denver Broncos
Monday, Dec. 25
1 p.m. Las Vegas Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs
8:15 p.m. Baltimore Ravens at San Francisco 49ers