Steelers Not Looking Beyond Bengals

The two best teams in football may be in the AFC and the stage is now set for Pittsburgh and New England to scrap for the right to play host to the championship game in January.

Both 8-1, the Steelers and Patriots are two full games better than anyone else in the conference. If they remain in a tie, the Steelers would earn the No. 1 seed based on their 34-20 victory against the Patriots Oct. 31. But based on the records of the two teams' opponents, New England has a big edge.

The Patriots' seven opponents have a combined record of 24-39, while Pittsburgh's seven opponents are 33-30. Each team has only three home games left and four on the road.

With the league's longest current winning streak at seven games, the Steelers and their coach don't even want to discuss anything beyond their next game Sunday in Cincinnati.

"My goodness, everybody in this league can beat anybody on any given Sunday," coach Bill Cowher said. "If you start to take yourself too seriously that's the trap you fall into. We aren't going to do that. We have no margin for error, it takes everybody on this football team. We have to continue to play with the same preparation. It starts on Wednesday when we come in here; we're going to continue to do that."

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