Steelers believe as playoff hopes still exist

It's the time of year when magic happens, when dreams come true and wishes become reality.

For the Steelers, they could use a little bit of that magic, the type that permeates the classic holiday movie "Miracle on 34th Street." Who knows, maybe there will be a "Miracle on South Water Street," delivering the perfect holiday wish to the Steelers practice facility.

A 30-20 win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday night has the Steelers still in the playoff hunt. Yes a lot needs to happen, a whole lot as a matter of fact. But, miracles do happen.

It all starts with the Steelers who must win their next two games - at Green Bay this Sunday and then Sunday, Dec. 29 against Cleveland at Heinz Field.

"You never know. First things first we have to win these games and see where it goes from there," said defensive end Ziggy Hood. "If we can stay on the right path and get a little help from somebody, you never know."

After that, well here is what needs to happen beyond the Steelers winning the next two.

Baltimore Ravens: Must lose two of their next three games – remaining schedule is tonight at Detroit, vs. New England, and at Cincinnati.

Miami Dolphins: Must lose both games – remaining schedule at Buffalo and vs. New York Jets.

San Diego Chargers: Must lose one game – remaining schedule vs. Oakland and vs. Kansas City.

New York Jets: Must win both games – remaining schedule vs. Cleveland and at Miami.

"It's crazy. We aren't taking the easy road trying to get to the playoffs," said long snapper Greg Warren. "But we are going to go out there and give it our all."

The Steelers 0-4 start had most people outside of the friendly confines of the team's practice facility thinking the team wouldn't be in playoff conversations come Week 6 of the season let alone still showing signs of postseason hope come Week 16.

"I have seen crazier things happen with this team, especially if we play like we did Sunday night and finish the season strong," said Hood. "Who knows what will happen. We just have to keep believing and keep playing and go out there and win the next one."

Yes, they must believe. Just like the classic line in "Miracle on 34th Street," when the character played by a young Natalie Wood says, "I believe. I believe. It's silly, but I believe," and her belief pays off.

"If there is a chance," said Warren, "we are not going to stop believing."

It just might be a good night to go home and watch a holiday classic.

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