Even though OTAs are still going on around the NFL, that’s not stopping major media types from attempting to predict records of all 32 teams for the 2023 NFL season. On Thursday, Adam Rank of NFL.com did just that and during his show on NFL Network he revealed that he has the Pittsburgh Steelers going 9-8.
Rank has the Steelers opening the 2023 regular season with a Week 1 home win against the San Francisco 49ers. From there he has the Steelers losing at home to the Cleveland Browns in Week 2 and then winning on the road in Week 3 against the Las Vegas Raiders.
After starting 2-1, Rank has the Steelers losing their next two games ahead their Week 6 bye week, those two losses coming at the hands of the Houston Texans and the Baltimore Ravens. After the Steelers’ bye week, Rank has the Steelers going 7-5 the rest of the way. He has those seven wins coming against the Tennessee Titans, Green Bay Packers, Arizona Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, Cincinnati Bengals, Seattle Seahawks, and the Ravens.
As far as the AFC North games that the Steelers will play in 2023, Rank has them going 2-4 in the division. Those two wins he has in the team’s final three games and against the Bengals and Ravens. He has the Steelers going 5-4 at home in 2023 and 4-4 on the road.
“I’ve got some faith in Kenny Pickett,” Rank said after presenting his game-by-game predictions for the Steelers in 2023. “He was impressive during his rookie season. I think they’re gonna build on something that they’ve been doing over the last couple of years. So, when I look at the Pittsburgh Steelers, I’ve got them for nine wins.”
If the Steelers do indeed go 9-8 in 2023 with a 2-4 AFC North record, it’s hard to imagine them getting into the playoffs. Stranger things have happened, however. For most of the offseason, the over/under win total for the Steelers has been 8.5 so nine wins would obviously crack the over albeit barely.
As for Rank’s record predictions for the other three AFC North teams, he has the Bengals going 14-3, the Ravens going 9-8, like the Steelers, and Browns going 7-10.
I’m sure this won’t be the last time that Rank attempts this feat between now and the start of the 2023 regular season. Assuming that’s correct, it will be interesting to see if he still has the Steelers going 9-8 later on in the offseason.