Now I am going to try and break this down the best way I know how since I am pretty good at these things and if anybody thinks I am wrong or knows I am wrong please say so in reply.
1. Now this is the most simple one and I am pretty certain on it. If the Steelers beat the Cowboys Sunday and then the Bengals next week at home they will clinch a playoff spot even if the Jets somehow someway win out and finish 9-7 as well. I say this because the Steelers already own the head to head tiebraker over them by virtue of their win here at Heinz Field over the Jets on September 16th so a win this week over Dallas and a win next week over the Bengals will guarantee that the Steelers will not finish no worse then 9-7 and that the Bengals will finish no better then 9-7 and since the Steelers would have beaten them twice it really wont matter if the Steelers win or lose the last game against the Browns or the Bengals win or lose their last game against the Ravens IF they win this week in Dallas and beat Cincy next week at home they are in. If anybody knows if there is any possible scenario where should the Steelers,Bengals and Jets finish tied at 9-7 the Steelers wouldnt get in please tell me so and explain why. I am pretty certain they would break the tie within the division 1st between the Steelers and Cincy where the Steelers would win since they swept them and then it would go head to head with Jets after that which of course also goes to the Steelers seeing that they beat them head to head.
2. Here is a real crazy scenario and one the Steelers absolutely do not want to put themselves in. Let's say the Steelers beat the Cowboys on Sunday and then lose to the Bengals next Sunday, and let's say if that happens the Ravens split their next 2 games with the Broncos and Giants which would clinch the division for them but also put them at 5 losses. The Ravens might be in a situation where they have already clinched the division going into their last game in Cincy and they can no longer improve their seeding by getting a bye week or anything. They will either be the 3 or the 4. If that indeed is the case and like I said the Steelers beat Dallas and then turn around and lose to the Bengals at home next week the only way the Steelers would be able to get in the playoffs then is if they beat the Browns and they would then need the Ravens to absolutely beat the Bengals in Cincy so that they both would finish 9-7 but the Steelers would win the tiebraker with a better division record then the Bengals at 3-3 to their 2-4. The bottom line is you do NOT under any circumstances want to put your fate in the hands of the Ravens to have to win a game to help you get in the playoffs especially if they have nothing to play for. Because you can bet your last dollar that Harbaugh and that whole Ravens team will know the scenario and you can take it to the bank that they will tank that game on purpose so that the Steelers do not get into the playoffs and the Bengals do.
3. One final scenario which could go either way here and that is if the Ravens lose their next 2 games against the Broncos and Giants which is very very possible and either the Steelers win their next 2 games against the Cowboys and Bengals or the Steelers lose to both Dallas and the Bengals either the Steelers or Bengals would have a chance to still win the AFC North going into the final week. Let's say the Ravens do lose their next two games to Denver and the Giants and the Steelers beat Dallas but lose next week to the Bengals. The Bengals will go into their final game with the Ravens which is in Cincinnati with either a chance to win the AFC North if they beat the Ravens that day or not even make the playoffs at all and be left out if the Ravens beat them and the Steelers beat the Browns. That is probably the most craziest scenario but it definitely is possible. This is going to be very very fun to watch the next 2 weeks stay tuned and let me know if all of these scenarios I just posted make sense at all and if it clears somethings up a bit...