Why this year won't turn into last year's debacle
Currnet injuries notwithstanding, this article from Cold Hard Football Facts gives an interetsing synopsis of Steelers performance thus far:
QUALITY STANDINGS UPDATE
Sure, the Steelers got smoked in Week 10 by the Patriots. But they remain well positioned to compete for a conference title, at least if our Quality Standing are any indication.
Teams that are battle tested during the regular season are generally well groomed to succeed in the meat grinder of the postseason. And no team with a winning record right now is more battle tested than Pittsburgh.
They've faced seven Quality Opponents this year and are 4-3 against those teams with winning records. They've also outscored those seven opponents by an average of 2.0 PPG. It's not dominant by any stretch. But 6-3 overall is hardly a bad record when seven of those nine opponents are likely playoff-bound teams.
Only three teams so far this year have faced a greater number of Quality Opponents: Buffalo, Cleveland and Denver. And those three teams have certainly suffered in the face of such a brutal schedule. Those three teams are a combined 5-19 against Quality Opponents and 7-20 overall.
So Pittsburgh has clearly perservered in light of its schedule ... the big loss to the Patriots notwithstanding.