And just like that, we're officially halfway through the 2015-16 NFL season. So many surprises and disappointments have taken place, but there's still plenty of time left to make emends. The second half of the season begins Thursday, and a hand full of squads have to come out with a victory.

Here are five teams who have to win this week.

1. Pittsburgh Steelers

What a devastating defeat it was for the Pittsburgh Steelers. They lost star running back Le'Veon Bell, they blew a fourth quarter lead to the Cincinnati Bengals, and it looks like the AFC North is all but decided. Ben Roethlisberger had one of his worst fourth quarter performances of his career in that game. Still, not all is lost. With the New York Jets and Buffalo Bills struggling lately, a wild card spot may be opening up. The Steelers take on the Oakland Raiders this week in a classic '70s rivalry game. If the Steelers drop to 4-5, it's going to be tough to get back up.

2. New York Giants

The NFC East doesn't have a single team with a winning record thanks to the New York Giants losing to the New Orleans Saints. It was the third highest scoring game in NFL history, and it didn't end the way the Giants had hoped. The Philadelphia Eagles didn't even play in Week 8, but they had a terrific weekend watching others in the division lose. The Giants have to win against the Buccaneers and get to 5-4 because the Eagles and Dallas Cowboys are playing one another; meaning at least one NFC East team has to win this weekend.

3. Dallas Cowboys

Staying in the NFC East for a moment. The Cowboys have lost five games in a row without Tony Romo, and the bleeding just continues. Brandon Weeden wasn't terrible, but Matt Cassel has been awful in his two starts. Now 2-5, the Cowboys are in dead last in the division, and they have to beat the Eagles on Sunday Night Football. If the Cowboys lose this game, more than likely their season is over. However, a win for Jerry's team would be huge. It would make them 3-1 in the division and 2-0 against the Eagles. It's also a home game for the Cowboys.

4. Atlanta Falcons

Don't look now, but the Carolina Panthers are the No. 1 seed and only undefeated team in the NFC. The Atlanta Falcons suffered a huge loss in Week 8 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to drop to 6-2. The Falcons should be able to get a wild card spot, but they still have their eyes set on winning the NFC South. Good news for the Falcons this week; they take on Blaine Gabbert and the San Francisco 49ers. It's a long road trip, but the Falcons should be able to come out of California with a win.

5. New York Jets

Uh oh. The Jets aren't turning back into the Jets, are they? After a promising 4-1 start, the Jets have lost their last two games to the Raiders and New England Patriots. The AFC East is slipping away, but they can certainly still get a wild card spot. The Jets absolutely have to win this week against the 2-5 Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jets will be at home in this must win game. Ending Sunday 5-3 is a whole lot different than 4-4.

Follow Damon Salvadore on Twitter @DamonSalvadore1