The Pittsburgh Steelers have already missed the playoffs four times in the last six seasons, and the latest setback comes this week.
The Steelers were eliminated from playoff contention in the AFC Championship Game, but that didn’t stop the team from taking advantage of a bye in order to make the postseason for the first time since 2009.
This week, the Steelers face the Philadelphia Eagles in a Week 17 contest.
The Bengals will face the New England Patriots in Week 18 in a game that will determine who will finish with the No. 1 seed in the playoffs.
The Patriots are coming off their second straight win, a 24-13 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals on Thanksgiving Day.
In other news, the league announced Monday that the NFL Players Association is now representing a player whose alleged assault on a teammate at a hotel room in Las Vegas was not covered by the league’s concussion protocol.
The league will pay out $4.5 million to the victim, the players union said.