The Buffalo Bills look to keep their AFC East title hopes alive when they visit the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday Night Football. The Bills trail New England by a game in the AFC East, with a showdown between the two teams looming next weekend. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh is currently sitting in a Wild Card spot, but a loss could open the door for other teams to jump into their position.
When this matchup was scheduled, it was probably never a thought that it would determine so much within the playoff race. But the Bills and Steelers are two of AFC teams battling for the No. 5 spot in the conference, with a lot on the line. A loss for Pittsburgh could send that resilient team right into trouble and possibly out of the sixth spot, with the AFC South lurking, waiting to make its move. Buffalo has impressed this year, and even with a loss to Baltimore last week, it has a shot at a division title.
Pittsburgh has had four quarterbacks on the roster this year, two getting hurt, one traded and the other promoted to active duty. Devlin Hodges continues to start over Mason Rudolph, who struggled when he was the starter. The Steelers have also gone through wide receivers like tissues during flu season and running backs as well. But they continue to be competitive, and a win in this one could put them a step closer to the playoff spot that nobody expected us to see them get.
The home-team Steelers are one-point favorites for this one, with the over/under set at 37.
Reaching New Heights
When the Bills snuck into the playoffs two years ago and took a 10-3 loss to Jacksonville, they went just 9-7 and did not impress at any juncture of the year. This time, though, they are proving that their offense is far better, and should they go back to the postseason, defeating them will be no cakewalk.
Josh Allen has really improved in his second year, continuing to burn opposing defenses that doubt his ability to run the football. Devin Singletary is proving to be a game-breaker with huge carries in their time of need. Wide receivers John Brown and Cole Beasley have fit perfectly too.
The Buffalo defense is tremendous and provides constant pressure on opposing quarterbacks. And the Bills secondary provides second-to-none coverage. This is a big one for them.
Looking For Another Big Win
The Steelers can drop Buffalo to sixth in the AFC with a win, which would be significant. Hodges will draw the primetime start in the biggest game of the season, with an injury-prone James Conner also returning to the backfield.
The Steelers have made things work well on offense with Randy Fichtner and the many starting quarterbacks, and it shows that the system is solid and can still work when Ben Roethlisberger is not playing at all.
The Pittsburgh defense will need to stop the run, something it generally does pretty well. Singletary is among the NFL leaders in 10-yard carries, so slowing him will go a long way toward winning.
Pittsburgh Sneaks By
In the first game featuring three brothers (Trey, Tremaine and Terrell Edmunds) in 92 years, Pittsburgh’s Edmunds pair will help their team get the victory. Sorry, Buffalo, Pittsburgh gets the win.
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