Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Matchup Preview (12/5/21): Betting Odds, Depth Charts, Live Stream (Watch Online)
Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Matchup Preview (12/5/21)
In this AFC North matchup, Lamar Jackson and the 8-3 Baltimore Ravens are headed to Pittsburgh to play Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers. In a tale of two completely opposite quarterbacks, this should be an intriguing game. The Ravens currently sit at the top of the AFC North with an 8-3 record and are coming off of two wins against the Browns and the Bears after losing to the Dolphins in week 10. Despite Jackson throwing four picks last week, they were able to beat the Browns and enhance their winning record and probability to win the AFC North. The Steelers are 5-5-1 and lost their last two games after tying the winless Lions, so their season is certainly on the line this week and they would need a win to be a definite contender in the playoffs. The Ravens are definitely the more talented team, but the drastic differences in the team make for an interesting matchup. These teams will likely have two completely different game plans this week. One will likely run the ball and exploit a bad run defense, and the other will probably throw the ball and exploit a bad pass defense.
Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Betting Odds
The Ravens are the 4-point favored team in this division matchup, which seems like a small margin given the struggles that PIttsburgh has seen in recent weeks. I wouldn’t be surprised if this margin grows over the week. The total is set at 44, which is good news for the over-betters because the Steelers have allowed 41 points in each of their last two games. The Ravens are 5-6 at covering this year and 1-3 as the away favorite. They’ve been left to scramble recently, covering only twice in the last five games and hitting the under on the last three games. The Steelers are 4-7 against the spread and have only been a home team underdog once this season and they covered. Their defense has allowed the over to hit in the last two games, giving up 82 points. This is bad news for them against a talented Lamar Jackson, and without T.J. Watt, I don’t see them containing him.
My prediction: Ravens win 35-14, Ravens cover, over 44
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Time: 2:25 PM ET
Location: Heinz Field – Pittsburgh, PA
TV Coverage: CBS
Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Live Stream
Where can you watch Ravens vs. Steelers online? You can stream this game, and many other NFL games live online with Hulu. Hulu has a 7 Day free trial and is cheaper than cable options at $5.99/month. Watch Ravens vs. Steelers Free Online Now.
Baltimore Ravens Analysis
Lamar Jackson threw a season-high 4 interceptions last week against the Browns and yet – they still won the game. Lamar Jackson is the only quarterback in the league who can pull that off. His ability to run the ball continues to be his biggest weapon as he has the highest rushing average of any quarterback in the league by a long shot with 70.7 per game and sits just one yard short of Najee Harris in total rushing yards this season. He gets the team down the field, and fast, but he hasn’t taken care of the ball. He has 12 interceptions and 4 fumbles. But his running threat suggests problems for a struggling Pittsburgh run defense as they will likely give him space to run.
Offensively, tight end Mark Andrews has 761 yards this season, the second-most by any tight end in the league. He has deep-threat capabilities and has looked very sharp in the last few weeks. Against the Browns last week, Andrews had one of the best catches of the year late in the game to get the Ravens down the field. Devonta Freeman is their other rushing threat outside of Jackson that can exploit a weak Steelers run defense. He has 324 yards over 75 carries and 3 touchdowns. Marquise Brown is among this group as well and is leading the team in touchdowns.
As an offensive unit, they average close to 400 yards per game, 150.7 of which are rushing yards mostly thanks to Lamar Jackson. They have a weak offensive line that has allowed Jackson to be sacked 30 times, and if T.J. Watt was playing, this would be a problem, so they should consider themselves lucky in that department.
The Ravens are dead last in the league in passing yards against them, which suggests a pass-heavy game from the Steelers, but that relies on Roethlisberger to be dependable, which he is not. They do have Marlon Humphrey in the secondary, who’s an all-pro cornerback, but the early loss of Marcus Peters has definitely hurt their pass defense. They have been unbelievable in stopping the run game though and have been holding teams to just 84.2 rushing yards per game, the second most in the league. Patrick Queen holds down the defense alongside rookie Odafe Oweh and Tyus Bowser who have a combined 10.5 sacks this season. Humphrey, Oweh, and Queen are all battling injuries/illnesses right now, which would mean a huge defensive loss for the Ravens if they couldn’t play, and could very well change the outcome of this game.
Justin Tucker has been rock solid for the Ravens as well, contributing 91 points and averaging 8.3 points per game. He has a 92% completion percentage and 100% completion percentage on field goals over 50 yards. If all else fails, they have this leg to fall back on.
The Ravens are the better team no doubt, but this game is more likely to come down to which team will make fewer mistakes.
Baltimore Ravens Depth Chart
Pittsburgh Steelers Analysis
The Steelers are 3rd in AFC North at 5-5-1 and are currently in a very difficult race for a playoff spot. If the season ended today, they would be on the outside looking in. They’re coming off two losses where they gave up a combined 82 points following an egregious tie to the winless Lions team. Ben Roethlisberger is looking older every week and is easily the most immobile quarterback in the league. He has just 6 rushing yards on the season. His last game against the Bengals was his worst performance yet where he completed just 58% of his passes, threw two interceptions and lost by over 30 points. A strong Baltimore defensive line will probably get him moving which we have seen, and it’s not pretty.
Despite having a huge rushing threat, they sit at the bottom of the league in rushing yards per game with 87.1. Najee Harris is among the top of all running backs and has 1,000+ total yards over rushing and passing yards with 7 touchdowns. The Baltimore defensive line will likely be hard to penetrate even for him, and this will mean the ball will find the hands of Diontae Johnson most likely, who is their number one target. He’s averaging 80.9 receiving yards per game and is filled in for the lackluster performance of Chase Claypool this year who really hasn’t done much in terms of being a consistent threat. He’s recorded just 1 touchdown on the season. Tight end Pat Friermuth is another threat, and has six touchdowns this season.
The Steelers have shown solid showings of pass defense, averaging just 234.5 yards against them per game. Safety Minkah Ftizpatrick is one of the best safeties in the league and holds down their secondary with 73 tackles.Their rush defense however, is a mess – they allow 133 yards per game and this will be breeding grounds for Lamar Jackson to show off, especially without T.J. Watt. Watt leads the team in sacks with 12.5 and is one of the best pass rushers in the league. Without him, they will likely struggle to contain Jackson’s speed.
Chris Boswell has been nearly perfect this year – he averages 7.8 points per game, and has 86 points total. He has kicked 23 field goals with a 95.7% completion rate, missing just one. Having a consistent kicker on their side as the underdog could be the jump they need to keep this game close.
Pittsburgh Steelers Depth Chart
Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Daily Fantasy Picks
For the Ravens, the ball will likely stay in Jackson’s hands, but when it doesn’t, I don’t see how it doesn’t go to Mark Andrews. He has come up huge in these last few weeks and has shown that he can be a deep threat when they need one. Considering how much they will likely run the ball, he may not get tons of points, but I think he will have the most receiving yards.
Chase Claypool hasn’t been super dangerous lately but, the Ravens will likely look to shut down Diontae Johnson which may open up some room for Claypool to make clutch plays and exploit Baltimore’s weak secondary.