With a dominating Thursday Night Football win under the belt, Ravens fans can sit back and enjoy a full slate of football this weekend and Monday night.
The Ravens have reached the midpoint of their season with a 4-4 record and find themselves in the thick of the AFC playoff picture. They're not too far behind the Steelers and in the middle of the pack for a wild-card spot.
There are three main rules when choosing who to root for:
- Always root against the Steelers
- Always root for an NFC to beat an AFC team
- Root for teams in the wild-card mix to lose
With that said, here's who Ravens fans should be rooting for in Week 8:
Oakland Raiders (3-4) at Buffalo Bills (4-2)
*Sunday, 1 p.m.
*This is a tough one. The Raiders have a worse record, so the conventional wisdom would be to root for them to pull even at 4-4 and halt the surging Bills, who have been one of the NFL's biggest surprises so far with a 4-2 record. Then again, the Raiders could heat up if they get a second-straight victory after beating the previously undefeated Kansas City Chiefs last week. Still, the Ravens hold a tiebreaker over the Raiders and the Bills would be tougher to reel in if they get to 5-2. So perhaps it's best not to outthink this one too much.
Root for: Raiders
Indianapolis Colts (2-5) at Cincinnati Bengals (2-4)
Sunday, 1 p.m.
The Colts are still operating without starting quarterback Andrew Luck and are in last place in the AFC South. The Bengals are coming off a loss to the Steelers, but won their two previous games. As much as it may pain old-school Ravens fans, pull for Indy.
Root for: Colts
Los Angeles Chargers (3-4) at New England Patriots (5-2)
Sunday, 1 p.m.
Once again, this is going to be tough to convince yourself to do. The Patriots lead the AFC East and it's hard to imagine them not finishing the season that way. The Chargers have won three in a row and thrust themselves into the playoff picture. It would probably be better to concede a playoff spot to the rival Patriots to halt the Chargers.
Root for: Patriots
Pittsburgh Steelers (5-2) at Detroit Lions (3-3)
Sunday, 8:30 p.m.
No explanation needed. The Steelers are still very much within striking distance of the second-place Ravens. Plus, it's the Steelers.
Root for: Lions
Denver Broncos (3-3) at Kansas City Chiefs (5-2)
Monday, 8:30 p.m.
The Chiefs have lost two straight after being the last undefeated team in the league through the first five weeks. Still, they are two wins ahead of anyone else in their division and the Broncos are a team likely to be in the wild-card picture at the end of the year. For the same reasons to root for the Patriots, push for Kansas City to separate from the pack in the AFC West.
Root for: Chiefs