Two of the top teams in the AF C will meet this weekend when the New England Patriots visit Heinz Field to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers in what is likely going to be a potential playoff matchup. The game is scheduled to begin at 4:25 PM. ET.
Let’s get into the odds on this game and then I’ll give my favorite pick.
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Patriots vs Steelers Odds
- New England Patriots -7.5
- Pittsburgh Steelers +7.5
- Over/Under 47
The Patriots are currently 5-1, and have the best record in the AFC. The team also has quarterback Tom Brady back in the lineup, which has given their offense a much needed boost in the last two weeks.
Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will not play in this game after undergoing meniscus surgery that is going to keep him out for up to four weeks. The Patriots would love to take advantage of Roethlisberger’s absence, but they can’t afford to overlook the short-handed Steelers, who still have a lot of talent on the offensive side of the ball.
Without Roethlisberger under center, the Steelers will focus more on running the ball, but it might prove to be difficult against a Patriots rush defense that is allowing only 92 rushing yards per game.
Landry Jones will be starting at quarterback for Pittsburgh, which is something he did last year when Roethlisberger went down with an injury and Michael Vick wasn’t effective running the offense.
Last year, Jones was inconsistent, but since he has had another year in Mike Tomlin’s offense, he should be better prepared to handle the pressure. With Roethlisberger out for at least a month, the Steelers know they can’t afford to lose too many games or else it will be difficult to get into the playoffs. Fortunately, they have a few winnable games coming up on their schedule so a loss to the Patriots won’t hurt as much.
When Brady was out serving his four-game suspension, the Patriots were 3-1, which led some people to speculate about the team trading Brady or giving backup Jimmy Garropolo the starting job. However, Brady’s performance in the two games since he returned from suspension, showed just how valuable he is to the team’s success.
Tight end Rob Gronkowski, who missed the first couple of games because of an injury, had just one catch in two games before Brady’s return. In the two games he has played with Brady, Gronkowski has 271 yards and one touchdown.
Brady will try to continue his magic against a Steelers defense that made Ryan Tannehill look good last week.
I would normally jump on the Steelers as 7 point home dogs, but the fact that Jones will start doesn’t give me any confidence in the team so I’m picking the Patriots to win the game and cover the spread.
Play: Patriots -7.5 @ Bovada.lv