Every August, the game's greatest players gather in Canton, Ohio, to welcome the year's new inductees to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. It's a fitting place for a monument to the history of professional American football. It was in Canton that the National Football League was founded in 1920, and the love of football still runs deep in the surrounding area. You don't have to go far in any direction to find an NFL city rich in history and full of devoted fans.
AFC North territory, circa 2008. Boundaries are very much in dispute.
These four teams make up the AFC North, geographically the most tightly packed division in the NFL. Every season, the Steelers, Browns, Bengals, and Ravens face off against each other in pursuit of the AFC North title and the playoff spot that comes with it.
AFC-North.com is dedicated to keeping a record of the games, people, and traditions that make the division special.
As a Steelers fan who later moved to Ohio, I first got the idea for the rivalry section of this site when I witnessed the local excitement over the Browns' return to the NFL and the renewal of their rivalry with the Steelers. This led me to start reading about the histories of the Steelers' division rivals.
It's surprising how many pivotal events in pro football history took place in AFC North cities, and how many ways the four teams' histories are intertwined. In fact, it's hard to tell the story of one team without the others.
When I learned that the NFL was about to realign into four-team divisions in 2002, I thought it would be interesting to design a website focusing on a division rather than just one team or the whole league.
My hope is that fans of the Steelers, Browns, Bengals, and Ravens alike will find this site an interesting resource about their favorite (and their most hated) teams!