What an eventful Week 11 in the AFC North, and not in a good way.
Cincinnati Bengals star quarterback Joe Burrow was lost for the season with a wrist injury suffered in the Thursday Night Football loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Baltimore lost Mark Andrews in the same game, the standout tight end breaking his leg.
That doesn’t even hit on the Cleveland Browns losing quarterback Deshaun Watson for the season with a broken bone in his shoulder.
The Pittsburgh Steelers, somehow, came out of Week 11 largely unscathed from an injury standpoint, yet they dropped a key game in the AFC North standings after a disastrous 13-10 loss on the road to a short-handed Browns team.
Coming out of Week 11, the Browns moved ahead of the Steelers in the standings, splitting the season series in the process.
Baltimore remains on top of the division at 8-3 overall, including 3-2 in the division, while the Browns move to 7-3 on the season with an identical 3-2 record in the AFC North as the Ravens. However, the two split the season series as well, but the Browns have a better record in the AFC at 5-2, compared to Baltimore’s 5-3.
Pittsburgh has a 2-1 record in the AFC North and will get a chance to get back on track in the division in Week 12. The Steelers travel to the depleted Bengals, who sit at 5-5 on the season but 0-3 in the division and 1-5 in the AFC.
The loss to the Browns is certainly a frustrating one for the Steelers, but there is still hope for the division and for the season overall. Pittsburgh has another matchup with Baltimore still to come this season and has two matchups against Cincinnati. Realistically, the Steelers could finish 5-1 or 4-2 in the division, which would have them right there in the race.
The Steelers also have a relatively easy schedule ahead, though that’s easier said than done with this team. The loss certainly stings, but the Steelers still have a lot of football ahead in an AFC North that is quite winnable at this point.