15 Steelers catch flu, spark conspiracy theories

The Patriots may be favorites over the Pittsburgh Steelers in this weekend's AFC Championship Game, but they can use all the help they can get. The way things have been going for Pitt this week, it looks like the Pats are in luck.

According to ESPN, up to 15 Steelers players have come down with the flu, forcing four (highlighted by kicker Chris Boswell) to miss practice Wednesday and keeping tight end Ladarius Green out Thursday. This is certainly one of the weirder stories in recent memory, and while everybody should play on Sunday, they may very well be limited.

Worse for New England, this could turn into another unsubstantiated cheating story. There's absolutely no evidence the Patriots did anything to sicken the Steelers at this point, and it's an even bolder offense than some other allegations, but the way public opinion works, that might not matter. Expect Pats coaches to have to take questions on the subject, especially if New England blows out Pittsburgh on Sunday.

Thankfully for the Steelers, all the affected players should play, but they might not be 100% by game day, especially with the missed practice. For now, we'll just have to wait and see how it all pans out.

Photo courtesy Pittsburgh Steelers

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