Every July like clockwork the message boards come alive on the eve of the "New" football season. The teams who had prior success the year before talk of great things, some fans talk of improvement and just maybe if things go right this year... and then you have the teams just hoping to win a game. Either way there is lots of chatter and hypothetical analysis as if fact is being spoken. Yes, this is the time of year where everyone has hope.
In July the Steelers and Ravens were the talk of the North. Rightfully so I must say, both teams coming off an AFC Championship game. The Superbowl champs and Flacco's O catching up with the vaunted D, this would be another year of Steelers/Ravens dominating the fall Sundays.
The Bengals were coming off a 4-11-1 '08, it was hard to imagine come the second week of December the Bengals could lock up the North. That is the reality after the Ravens dropped another one to the Packers to fall to 6-6, the Steelers join them both at 6-6. The best they can both hope for is 10-6. The Bengals own the tie breaker, so one more win by the Bengals and they will be in the playoffs. It will be time for celebration because who really knows when the next run to the playoffs will be.
Deep down were hoping could this be our year?!?!