NFL Early Game Free Pick
Steelers vs. Bengals is always a fun and entertaining affair and today’s game is no exception. The Steelers need this game and at 2-2-1, they really must win this thing or they are looking at an uphill climb out of the AFC North. The Bengals for all of their woes, they have been brilliant and lead the charge at 4-1. They are 2-0 at home, and 3-0 in conference. They have scored 153 points through 5 games against Pittsburg’s 143. The Points against differential is close, with the Bengals giving up 130 and the Steelers at 133. These two are remarkably close. Maybe the better terminology to use here would be, the Steelers are looking very good considering their many off the field woes. They have had their share but have overcome them fairly well, but this game is a must win at this point or the Steelers may not have the goods.
For the Steelers, James Conner must be the guy in this game or they have no chance. Big Ben can still throw for a mile and he can still create but he has very few big time down the field weapons. This game will not be won on the back of Ben Roethlisberger, it won’t happen. All of those weapons that he doesn’t have, Dalton does have! We are not saying Ben is washed up, a has-been or anything of the sort. He is still a viable quarterback just as Peyton Manning was in his last few years in Denver. The difference; Peyton had all pro talent that could burn any backfield. That team was smart tough, physical and they got after it in a big way. Ben simply doesn’t have that luxury. This game will rest on the strength of James Conner and his ability to gain big yards on the ground. The Steelers must slow this game down and make the Bengals play with them, they must use the clock and eat up pockets of time. If this game turns into a shootout; the Steelers are done, and they will lose.
The Bengals have Green, Boyd, Eifert, and Uzomah who can all create. This team is physical and they don’t mind getting their hands dirty. Between the four receivers mentioned, the Bengals have more than 1000 yards receiving for the year. This makes Daltons job easy. Dalton can deliver and he will. Between Mixon and Bernard, the Bengals have slightly more than 400 yards on the ground. That’s enough to stay a step ahead on 1st and 2nd downs and rely on the deep ball.
Nothing is easy in the NFL and on any given Sunday, anybody can beat anybody but at -1 the Bengals look like the deal of the century! They are playing well and after their huge come from behind victory last week against the Dolphins; that was a wakeup call. They will be tough to beat at home. The Steelers will need a miracle to get this one and we don’t see it.
Prediction: Bengals 31 Steelers 27
Best Bet: Bengals -1 -115
Parlay Bengals -1/Over 50 ½
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