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You can’t be a team with playoff aspirations and tie against a winless team at this point in the season. This is the position the Pittsburgh Steelers find themselves in after last week’s 16-16 tie with the Detroit Lions. This has also caused the Steelers to take a dip in the latest NFL power rankings from the NFL Network.
The Steelers took a dip from No. 14 down to No. 18 and here’s why:
The Steelers played down to the level of their opponent on Sunday, and it cost them what should have been an easy win at Heinz Field. With Ben Roethlisberger at home following a positive COVID-19 test, Mason Rudolph and the rest of the Steelers bumbled their way to a 16-16 tie against the winless Lions. Rookie tight end Pat Freiermuth fumbled near the Detroit sideline with eight seconds left, denying Pittsburgh the chance at a potential game-winning (and face-saving) field goal. Big Ben’s availability for this week is in doubt, and it was revealed Monday that star safety Minkah Fitzpatrick has also landed on the COVID-19 list. The Steelers are being challenged right now.
Despite being in second place in the AFC North, the Steelers are the No. 4 team in the division in these rankings. After this week’s game with the Los Angeles Chargers, the Steelers go back-to-back in the division with a road trip to the Cincinnati Bengals followed by its first of two with the Baltimore Ravens.