Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Matchup Preview (11/28/21): Betting Odds, Depth Charts, Live Stream (Watch Online)
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Matchup Preview (11/28/21)
The AFC North continues to be wide open, and Week 12 features two games between the four teams in that division,, including this rematch between the Bengals and Steelers. Cincinnati won the first meeting between these teams earlier in the year, their second-straight win in the rivalry, but the Steelers had won eleven straight games against the Bengals before those games. Can Pittsburgh get back on track against its divisional foe, or will Cincinnati put a further hold on a playoff spot in the AFC?
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Betting Odds
- Steelers are 7-0-1 ATS in their last 8 games after scoring 30+ points in their previous game
- Bengals are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games after a straight up win
- Steelers are 21-9-1 ATS in the last 31 meetings between these teams
- Under is 42-14-1 in the Steelers’ last 57 road games
- Over is 5-1-1 in the Bengals’ last 7 games as a home favorite
- Under is 5-1-1 in the last 7 meetings between these teams
The Steelers’ offense has looked much better as of late as in their last two games with Ben Roethlisberger, they’ve averaged 33 points per game. Meanwhile, the Bengals have scored 30+ points in four of their previous five games, and Pittsburgh’s defense was vulnerable to allowing big plays previous week without Minkah Fitzpatrick and Joe Haden. Even if those two key defensive players return this week, I like the over here. The Pittsburgh pass rush should be impactful against Joe Burrow and can create a couple of turnovers that would ultimately be the difference-maker in what should be a close game. I like the Steelers to cover and potentially win outright in a surprisingly high-scoring contest.
My predictions: Bengals win 27-24, Steelers cover, over 45.5 points
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Date: Sunday, November 28
Time: 1:00 PM ET
Location: Paul Brown Stadium – Cincinnati, OH
TV Coverage: CBS
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Live Stream
Where can you watch Steelers vs. Bengals 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 Steelers vs. Bengals Free Online Now.
Pittsburgh Steelers: OLB T.J. Watt (hip) Q, CB Joe Haden (foot) Q, TE Eric Ebron (knee) D, S Minkah Fitzpatrick (illness) IR/COVID-19
Cincinnati Bengals: WR Tyler Boyd (undisclosed) Q, WR Auden Tate (thigh) Q, DT Tyler Shelvin (knee) Q, OG Xavier Su’a-Filo (knee) IR
Pittsburgh Steelers Analysis
For as much criticism as Ben Roethlisberger has faced this season, he’s played much better lately as he’s completed 63+% of his passes in four straight games and has thrown for seven touchdowns and no interceptions over that span. He may not have nearly the same downfield velocity as he used to, but he’s capable of getting the ball to this team’s many playmakers, even behind a less-than-stellar offensive line.
Pittsburgh’s offensive line deserves some credit for keeping Roethlisberger to a below-average 21 sacks this season. Still, they look lost at times, and that was incredibly problematic against Joey Bosa last week. The run-blocking has been brutal this season, and while Najee Harris is an incredibly talented runner, he’s averaging just 3.6 yards per carry; that falls back on the offensive line that is ranked 28th in run-blocking on Football Outsiders.
Diontae Johnson may not be the headline-stealing wide receiver with eye-popping highlights, but he’s as consistent as it gets and is on pace for 111 catches for 1,348 yards and 7.5 touchdowns this season. Chase Claypool seems to be healthy now, and Pat Freiermuth is emerging as a reliable threat, giving this team a consistent pass-catching corps and standout rookie Najee Harris.
Pittsburgh’s defense struggled to contain Justin Herbert last week, but they were without their two best defensive players in T.J. Watt and Minkah Fitzpatrick. On the season as a whole, however, they rank just 25th in defensive DVOA after finishing first in the league in that category last year. They’ve allowed the 14th-most points and the 23rd-most yards, so this is a more beatable Steelers’ defense than we’re used to seeing.
Pittsburgh Steelers Depth Chart
Cincinnati Bengals Analysis
Joe Burrow’s improvements as a passer have been phenomenal in his second year in the NFL, and he’s played like a borderline MVP candidate at times. After having a 3.2% touchdown rate as a rookie, one of the lowest in the NFL, he’s now at 6.7%, the second-best rate behind only Tom Brady (minimum 200 attempts). Burrow completed 77% of his passes when these teams played earlier in the year, and despite being sacked 11 times over his last three games, his efficiency has been very solid.
The Bengals’ franchise has done a commendable job of surrounding Burrow with high-level talent on offense, primarily with rookie Ja’Marr Chase already emerging as one of the best receivers in the NFL. Chase is on pace for over 1,400 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns as a rookie which would stand as one of the best rookie seasons of all time. Joe Mixon has also been awesome this year and the Bengals can run the ball very efficiently. Tee Higgins, Tyler Boyd, and C.J. Uzomah round out a talented offense.
Cincinnati’s offensive line is not elite by any means, and they’ve allowed 28 sacks, the seventh-most in the NFL. However, Jonah Williams is finally playing a fully healthy season and has been excellent at left tackle across from solid veteran free agency acquisition Riley Reiff. Quinton Spain has also been excellent at guard, although the rest of the interior of the line has been very susceptible. Still, this is not the sieve of an offensive line it was last year and they do enough to allow Burrow to lead an effective offense.
The Bengals’ defense is one of the most improved units in the NFL as they rank 15th in defensive DVOA after finishing last year at 27th. The additions of cornerback Chidobe Awuzie and pass-rusher Trey Hendrickson have transformed the pass defense into a much more viable unit along with the terrific safety play of Vonn Bell and Jessie Bates. D.J. Reader has been the key cog in the run defense to help Cincinnati rank 10th in run defense DVOA. The Bengals have been vulnerable to giving up big plays from time to time and they did allow Mike White to look like Patrick Mahomes for a game, but overall it’s been much better for this defense.
Cincinnati Bengals Depth Chart
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Daily Fantasy Picks
As I mentioned in my betting prediction, I see this game as being a sneaky high-scoring contest. That means plenty of DFS value! Joe Burrow is going to have extremely low ownership and I have him as a solid top-ten guy this week. Pairing him with Ja’Marr Chase will always be one of my favorite strategies, especially against a Pittsburgh defense that has been giving up tons of big plays lately. On the Pittsburgh side, Diontae Johnson is one of the best cash options with his extremely high floor and Chase Claypool could be in for a big game if the game script heads the direction I want it to. Of course, Najee Harris is viable given his heavy workload even if this isn’t an ideal matchup for him. Nobody will be targeting this game in GPPs, meaning you can get some awesome contrarian value here.
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