Ten months ago, way back in January’s AFC Divisional playoff round, the Jacksonville Jaguars were able to hold off the Pittsburgh Steelers' and a 21-point fourth-quarter barrage en route to a 45-42 win and a date with the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game. The playoff victory was Jacksonville’s first since 2007 when the David Garrard-led Jags topped the Steelers 31-29 at Heinz Field.
If you usually look past the NFL’s weekly Thursday night offering due to the uninspiring matchups, we can’t say we blame you. But this week has the potential to be very different.
The Panthers pay a rare visit to Pittsburgh for a rare pairing of Super Bowl contenders on Thursday night. The Steelers are 5–2–1 and hold a half-game lead on the Bengals in the AFC North. Carolina is 6–2 and trails New Orleans by a game in the NFC South.
The Kansas City Chiefs are the NFL’s lone unbeaten team through five weeks and will play host to Pittsburgh for what will surely be the marquis game on Sunday afternoon. So why does it seem everyone is focused on the Steelers?
One week can make a big difference early in an NFL season. Seven days ago, the Steelers and Ravens looked like the class of the AFC North, as usual. Both were 2–0 and hadn’t even trailed in a game up until that point.
Every NFL season has its share of drama. Unfortunately, with the Twitterverse and 24/7 media world, most of that drama happens off the field, as opposed to on. In the spirit of preseason predictions, I looked into my crystal ball and predicted 10 stories the sports media world will work itself into a frenzy over this season.