The (7-5) Steelers sit in a tied position with the Titans for the second wild-card spot in the AFC. There will not be a head to head game to determine the leader between those two so it will be in the Steelers’ best interest to pass the straight up. This game is very important in that. A win over the Browns last week put them in a great position. Devlin Hodges continues to be the man running the offense and Benny Snell has stepped up in a major way to create offense without either James Conner or JuJu Smith-Schuster. The (3-8-1) Cardinals are now on a 5 game losing streak which has turned their season upside-down. They could not get any offense going against the Rams last week while the Cardinals’ defense could not stop the Rams at all. Jared Goff threw for over 400 yards while Todd Gurley nearly hit 100 yards of rushing. If the Cardinals want any chance of winning this week, they will need to lock up defensively. For odds movement and full matchup history, visit the Pittsburgh Steelers at Arizona Cardinals matchup page.
Date: Sunday, December 8, 2019
Time: 4:25pm ET
Location: State Farm Stadium – Glendale, AZ
Pittsburgh Steelers: RB James Conner (D), WR JuJu Smith-Schuster (Q)
Arizona Cardinals: G J.R. Sweezy (Q), S Jalen Thompson (Q), G Max Garcia (Q), C A.Q. Shipley (Q)
Pittsburgh Steelers Analysis
The Steelers are sitting pretty after winning back-to-back games against the Bengals and Browns. They sit tied for the second wild-card spot in the AFC but will need to keep winning to reach the playoffs. Injuries to both JuJu Smith-Schuster and James Conner have not helped but the Steelers have had other players step up in their absence. Benny Snell and James Washington exploded last week against the Browns and were pivotal in the win. Devlin Hodges has also shown he is capable of leading this team and used a whole bunch of different names last week in the passing game.
The Rams were able to find out how to beat the Cardinals last week. There are tons of holes in the secondary. Currently, JuJu is listed as questionable. His return would give the Steelers a huge boost. James Washington’s recent outbreak is also a good sign of things to come. Getting those two going will be huge. Also, the Cardinals are the worst defense at guarding tight ends. Vance McDonald could find a lot of success despite his slow season so far.
Pittsburgh Steelers Depth Chart
Arizona Cardinals Analysis
The Cardinals’ offense has lost its splendor last week against the Rams. Kyler Murray threw for just 163 yards without a touchdown and an interception. Kenyan Drake also had an inefficient day with 13 carries for 31 yards. That added to the failings of the defense to contribute to a blow out loss. The Rams had over 500 yards of total offense which is hard to win against. If the Cardinals want any chance against the Steelers this coming week, they will need their defense to step up.
The Steelers have a tough defense to match up against. They are solid against both the run and pass. If the Cardinals want to score, they need to go back to what worked for them earlier in the season. Their fast-paced type of offense is where they find success. When Kyler Murray is hitting receivers on quick routes and moving the ball, it is unstoppable. Defensively, they just can’t allow 500 yards of total offense again. Devlin Hodges is not Jared Goff and won’t throw for 400 yards, but they can’t let him get any breathing room.
Arizona Cardinals Depth Chart
Daily Fantasy: Benny Snell
James Conner is not playing this week against the Cardinals so it will be Benny Snell again to lead the rushing attack. Snell has found great success in his limited games started. Two weeks ago, he nearly surpassed 100 yards. Last week, he picked up his first NFL touchdown. The Cardinals average 118 rushing yards against them per game. Jaylen Samuel may take some of his yards away, but that is totally fine. Snell will get the majority and will be hunting his second touchdown.