3 bold predictions for the AFC North in 2024

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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Steelers finish last in the division

The Steelers finished 10-7 and made the playoffs last season despite inconsistent quarterback play. They likely improved at that position over the offseason by swapping out Kenny Pickett for Russell Wilson and Justin Fields, but it remains to be seen how much they'll improve with that duo.

But picking the Steelers to finish last in the division here is more due to the difficulty of their schedule than it is an indictment on them as a team. The problem for the Steelers is that they'll have to play a brutal final stretch of the season. How brutal? Here's a recap from the Ravens official site:

"Some are calling Pittsburgh's gauntlet from Week 11 through the Week 18 one of the most difficult scheduling stretches they've ever seen. The Steelers will end the season facing eight straight opponents that made the playoffs last season, including two games against the Ravens and a Christmas game in Kansas City against the defending two-time Super Bowl champion Chiefs."

So while the Steelers could be a very good team next season, their schedule could doom them to finish last in the division.

The Super Bowl winner comes from the division

This is the boldest prediction of the bunch. It's relatively rare that all four teams in a division have a legitimate chance to win the Super Bowl in the same season, but that could be the case with the AFC North in 2024, and ultimately a team from the division will end up winning Super Bowl LIX.

The Bengals came close a couple of years ago, and the Ravens were in the AFC Championship last season. But at this point, it's been over a decade since a team from the division won the big game. That streak ends next season.