Ray Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens are battling it out with Ben Roethlisberger… (Nick Wass / Associated Press…)
The Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens have engaged in some fierce battles for the AFC North title during the last several seasons, and things seem to be shaping up that way again in 2012.
Granted, the NFL regular season hasn't even started, but our mock season has. And after just one day of voting by online readers, those two teams are already duking it out for supremacy in that division.
Several other battles are emerging as well, particularly in the AFC West and NFC South.
There's still plenty of time to take part in the fun. For the rest of this week, we'll accept your predictions for the four division winners and two wild-card teams in both the AFC and NFC -- that's 12 teams total.
Then we'll tally up the points (division winners will get two points per vote, wild cards one) to determine the 12 playoff teams -- the eight teams with the most points in each division, plus the two teams with the next-most points in each conference.
Next week, you will get to vote on the winners of all the playoff games, starting with the wild-card round Sunday and continuing each day until we crown a mock Super Bowl champion just before the real season kicks off Wednesday evening.
So keep those picks coming in. You can submit them either in the comment section of this post or in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by 3 p.m. PDT Saturday (write "mock season" in the subject window).
Jerry Jones, hip-hop star? [Video]
Tarvaris Jackson is in, Vince Young out in Buffalo
Dallas Cowboys have a plan to keep Dez Bryant out of trouble