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Are Steelers back in the race?

The Cincinnati Bengals' back-to-back late wins have them two games up in the AFC North. But things are getting interesting elsewhere in the division, as the Pittsburgh Steelers won their second straight Sunday with a last-second field goal against the hated Baltimore Ravens. That puts Pittsburgh at 2-4 -- hardly a dazzling record, but enough to leave them hovering around the AFC's second wild-card spot. Also there: Baltimore, which at 3-4 isn't exactly reminding of last season's Super Bowl champions.

Are the Steelers (2-4) legitimate playoff contenders?

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    13%
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    87%

Discuss (Total votes: 35,375)

  • How many games will the Steelers (2-4) win this season?

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      34%
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      42%
    •  
      24%

    Discuss (Total votes: 6,880)

  • What's your take on the Ravens this season?

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      47%
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      53%

    Discuss (Total votes: 6,879)

  • Will the Ravens (3-4) make the playoffs?

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      17%
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      83%

    Discuss (Total votes: 34,879)

  • What will the Steelers' (2-4) record be when they travel to Baltimore on Nov. 28? (Schedule: @OAK, @NE, vs. BUF, vs. DET, @CLE)

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      6%
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      19%
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      34%
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      29%
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      12%

    Discuss (Total votes: 6,401)

  • What will the Ravens' (3-4) record be when they host Pittsburgh on Nov. 28? (Schedule: @CLE, vs. CIN, @CHI, vs. NYJ)

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      4%
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      21%
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      45%
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      22%
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      8%

    Discuss (Total votes: 6,027)

  • Which best reflects your view of the Bengals' standing in the AFC North?

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      20%
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      56%
    •  
      24%

    Discuss (Total votes: 9,423)

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Nick Laham/Getty Images

NFL Week 7 -- Ravens at Steelers

Not long ago -- last year, maybe? -- Ravens-Steelers was among the NFL's best rivalries. And that was before Baltimore won the most recent Super Bowl. This season, though, both teams are struggling. Baltimore is stuck at .500 and Pittsburgh is coming off its first win of the season. With the Cincinnati Bengals not running away with the division, the Ravens remain in contention no matter what happens Sunday. But the Steelers might already be facing a must-win.

Which team will win the Ravens-Steelers game in Pittsburgh?

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    67%
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    33%

Discuss (Total votes: 12,159)

  • Is Sunday's game vs. the Ravens a must-win for the Steelers?

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      66%
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      4%
    •  
      30%

    Discuss (Total votes: 4,163)

  • Which team will win the AFC North?

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      68%
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      17%
    •  
      15%

    Discuss (Total votes: 4,182)

  • What do you make of Le'Veon Bell's struggles Sunday at the Jets (16 car, 34 yds)?

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      12%
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      35%
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      53%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,949)

  • Is Ray Rice (197 rush yards, 2.8 YPC this season) done as an elite running back?

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      52%
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      48%

    Discuss (Total votes: 31,795)

  • Who is the better quarterback?

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      47%
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      53%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,955)

  • Which team has the better defense?

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      68%
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      32%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,945)

  • What do you make of Mike Tomlin banning games in the Steelers' locker room?

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      85%
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      15%

    Discuss (Total votes: 44,159)

  • Mike Tomlin has banned his players from flipping into the end zone, citing "the potential for injury." How do you feel about flipping into the end zone?

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      37%
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      63%

    Discuss (Total votes: 32,019)

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Getty Images

NFL Week 6 -- Packers at Ravens

The verdict's still out on two of the last three Super Bowl champions, who enter Sunday with a collective 5-4 record. The rebuilt Baltimore Ravens might be deemed a pleasant surprise, especially after a 26-23 road win against the game Miami Dolphins. Green Bay, meanwhile, is treading water, winning big at home and losing close on the road. Will the latter occur again in Maryland -- especially considering Clay Matthews' absence?

Which team will win the Packers-Ravens game in Baltimore?

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    76%
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    24%

Discuss (Total votes: 15,571)

  • How concerned should Ravens fans be about Ray Rice's performance this year (2.9 YPC, 2 fumbles)?

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      53%
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      42%
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      5%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,945)

  • How much will Clay Matthews' absence (likely a month) hurt the Packers defense?

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      58%
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      39%
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      3%

    Discuss (Total votes: 4,021)

  • Which is the better unit?

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      60%
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      40%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,963)

  • Who is the better coach?

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      57%
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      43%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,954)

  • How many games will the Packers (2-2) win this season?

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      46%
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      44%
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      10%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,664)

  • Will the Ravens (3-2) make the playoffs?

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      45%
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      55%

    Discuss (Total votes: 3,650)

  • Will Aaron Rodgers play in another Super Bowl?

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      63%
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      25%
    •  
      12%

    Discuss (Total votes: 2,955)

  • Will Joe Flacco play in another Super Bowl?

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      10%
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      21%
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      69%

    Discuss (Total votes: 2,929)

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AP Photo/John Bazemore

What about the rest of the AFC?

Yeah, so the Denver Broncos are good. But a few other AFC teams laid down markers Sunday, showing that they might have something to offer Peyton Manning & Co. if the time does come. The New England Patriots held off the Atlanta Falcons on the road. The Kansas City Chiefs reached a surprising 4-0 with a rout of the New York Giants. The Indianapolis Colts put up their second straight blowout (it was the Jacksonville Jaguars, but a win's a win). And hey -- the Cleveland Browns were victorious again! Now, to see what happens to the Miami Dolphins on Monday night ...

  • If the Broncos are No. 1, which is the second-best team in the AFC?

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      31%
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      15%
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      43%
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      11%

    Discuss (Total votes: 32,757)

  • If/when Danny Amendola and Rob Gronkowski return, will the Patriots be a legitimate threat to the Broncos in the AFC?

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      64%
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      36%

    Discuss (Total votes: 17,480)

  • Which team will finish with the better record?

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      51%
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      37%
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      12%

    Discuss (Total votes: 29,402)

  • Which team will win the AFC North?

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      63%
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      19%
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      18%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,600)

  • Which team will win the AFC South?

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      63%
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      32%
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      5%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,253)

  • Which of these teams is most likely to miss the playoffs?

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      12%
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      70%
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      18%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,373)

  • How many games will the Jaguars win this season?

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      21%
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      46%
    •  
      33%

    Discuss (Total votes: 41,587)

  • Do you still believe the Trent Richardson trade was a mistake for the Browns?

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      50%
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      28%
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      22%

    Discuss (Total votes: 35,716)

Comment »

It was likely that the Ravens were going to struggle a bit this season. Despite winning a Super Bowl, they lost a lot of veteran leadership in the offseason, including at least two future Hall of Famers. One of those players, current ESPN analyst Ray Lewis, said that the team lacked leadership after a report surfaced about receiver Jacoby Jones getting hit on the head by a champagne bottle-wielding stripper. Torrey Smith and Vonta Leach took issue with those comments, but any time the words "champagne bottle-wielding stripper" come up in relation to your team, you know there's room for improvement.

Here's a sampling of what readers had to say in our Facebook conversation on the story:

What do you think? Leave your comments below.

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