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Ravens have rare chance to play spoiler to the Steelers

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The down on their luck 2015 Ravens have a chance to be something new.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Ravens' postseason chances might've ended after the loss to Seattle (or after Week 6, if we're talking about percentages and likelihood, or Week 11 if you think that Joe Flacco could help save the team), but that doesn't mean that we don't have a tiny little reason to want the Ravens to win one of their next two games. Because the Ravens are in the rare position of being able to spoil one of their rivals' postseason hopes.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are currently the sixth seed in the AFC. If the Steelers win one of their next two games and the Jets lose one of their next two, the Steelers have secured their path to the playoffs. If the Steelers win both of their games and the Bengals lose one of their next two, the Steelers win the North. If the Steelers lose one of their next two and the Jets win both of their next two, or the Steelers just lose both of their next two, the Steelers are out of the playoffs. The Ravens could help knock the Steelers out of the playoffs, or at the very least keep them from repeating as AFC North champions with a win on Sunday. And you have to admit that it would be hilarious if the Steelers were swept by a five win Ravens team.

At 11-5, the Bengals have secured an AFC playoff spot. That won't change regardless of what happens over the next two weeks. But where the Bengals place in the AFC North is what is up in the air. If the Steelers lose one of their next two, the Bengals will win the AFC North and the #3 seed regardless of what happens over the next two weeks. If the Steelers win both of their next two, then the Bengals must win at least one of their next two if they wish to keep the AFC North title. The Ravens could dash Cincinnati's AFC North hopes if they lose to the Steelers and defeat the Bengals in two weeks.

Obviously this is a hard task. The Ravens have a significant amount of meaningful players on IR right now and they would need some help from outside sources to truly derail their rivals' hopes. Not to mention the fact that the Ravens are picking third in the draft and a win would give the Ravens a lower pick. But it's still a fun thing to think about.