NFL Power Rankings 2012: Steelers top 10 despite worrisome Roethlisberger injury

Justin K. Aller

The Pittsburgh Steelers have won four in a row, but an injury to Ben Roethlisberger and a poor performance against the Kansas City Chiefs mean expectations aren't as high as they could be for the Steelers.

The Pittsburgh Steelers might have gotten their fourth straight win Monday night, but the way it happened - and more importantly, what happened to Ben Roethlisberger - have them scattered around the top ten of most power rankings released after Week 11.

Every major site putting together rankings after the Steelers' 16-13 overtime win over the Kansas City Chiefs has the Steelers in the top third of the league, generally bumping the team up a spot after the game. But the way they played against a team universally considered one of the league's worst and the injury to Roethlisberger's throwing shoulder temper expectations for Pittsburgh. Joel Thorman of SB Nation put the team higher than most, at No. 4 in his Week 11 NFL power rankings, but had serious questions depending on the severity of the Pittsburgh signal-caller's injury.

4. Pittsburgh Steelers (LW: 5, 6-3): Down goes Ben Roethlisberger with the one injury that could change the entire AFC playoff picture. It's his throwing shoulder, which is concerning for the Steelers. Missing him for any extended amount of time would lead to Byron Leftwich playing meaningful minutes in an NFL playoff race.

Brian Billick at FOX Sports also felt the team belonged in the top five, but ESPN, CBS, and the NFL all ranked Pittsburgh at No. 9. Worrisome for Pittsburgh is that the Baltimore Ravens, against whom they play two of the next three weeks, are ranked higher by most considering the two teams.

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