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AFC North Week 9 recap and Week 10 look ahead

The Ravens are back atop the division and should remain there with an easy Week 10 matchup.

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens
Justin Tucker
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

It didn’t take long for things to get back to normal in the AFC North.

Two weeks after the Cincinnati Bengals were being universally hailed as one of the surprise teams in the NFL, and even a potential Super Bowl contender, they were quickly brought back down to Earth.

The Baltimore Ravens are right where everyone thought they would be atop the division after eking out a 34-31 overtime victory against the Minnesota Vikings.

The Pittsburgh Steelers recorded their fourth straight victory after pulling out a 29-27 win over the Chicago Bears, and stand alone in second place. Cleveland, on the strength of its 41-16 thrashing of the Bengals are in third place, while Cincinnati sits comfortably in its usual spot - dead last.

Ravens hold on vs. Vikings

Justin Tucker kicked a 36-yard field goal with 16 seconds left in overtime to give the Ravens the win and help improve their record to 6-2. Tucker has made 53 consecutive field goals in the fourth quarter and overtime.

Baltimore quarterback Lamar Jackson finished the day with 266 yards passing, three touchdowns and two interceptions, and ran for 120 yards on 21 carries.

Steelers just keep winning

Justin Fields showed why he is the Chicago Bears’ starting quarterback when he led a furious comeback that netted 21 points in the fourth quarter alone. But the effort fell just short when Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger led Pittsburgh on a 7-play, 52-yard drive that ended with Chris Boswell’s 40-yard game-winning field goal with 26 seconds left.

Fields put together his best day as a pro, finished with 17 completions on 29 attempts for 291 yards, one touchdown and one interception. But Roethlisberger was better, going 21 of 30 for 205 yards and two scores as Pittsburgh improved to 5-3.

What’s up next?

Baltimore looks to stay on top of the division when it visits the lowly Miami Dolphins for a Thursday night game. The Ravens are more than a touchdown favorite at this point and own a statistical advantage over Miami in nearly every category.

To make matters worse, Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is nursing a small fracture in his middle finger and Miami may have to turn to Jacoby Brissett for his second consecutive start.

Pittsburgh plays host to winless Detroit, but the two teams are actually pretty evenly matched from a statistics point of view. Still, the Steelers are currently a nine-point favorite and look to run their winning streak to five games.

Lions quarterback Jared Goff has been one of the worst quarterbacks in the NFL so far this season, and his line has not done him any favors. Goff was sacked five times in Detroit’s week 8 loss to the Eagles.

Cleveland has probably the toughest test as it travels to New England to face a hungry Patriots team that is fresh off an impressive victory over the Carolina Panthers.

The Browns are riding high after completely embarrassing Cincinnati on Sunday and look to keep things going after its defense posted five sacks and a total of 12 quarterback hits.

The Bengals will use their bye week to try to turn things around.