Kansas City Chiefs vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Date and Time: Sunday, October 2, 2016, 8:30 p.m. ET
Location: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA
Week 4 NFL Odds at BookMaker.eu: Steelers -5.5, 47
Chiefs vs. Steelers TV Coverage: NBC
Playing second fiddle to the Denver Broncos is something the Chiefs have done each of the last three seasons. Why should 2016 be any different? With the defending champs getting out to a perfect 3-0 start after dominating the Bengals in the ‘Natti last week, KC once again finds itself in second place after winning two of its first three games.
The lone defeat occurred on the road at Houston where they suffered an ugly 19-12 loss as short 1 point underdogs. They did however bounce back last week by forcing eight New York Jets turnovers and turning them into a 24-3 home win and cover. Most troubling however is a rush defense ranked No. 24 overall in giving up 123 yards per game. With Le’Veon Bell returning to the Steelers RB1 slot and DeAngelo Williams also in the fold, the defense better rediscover its run stuffing ways or else it’s going to be a long night.
The Steelers were cruising right along heading into Week 3 taking down Washington on Monday Night Football in Week 1 and then following it up with a huge divisional win and cover against the Cincinnati Bengals. The offense was humming right along with Ben Roethlisberger leading the way, and DeAngelo’s rushing output was more than enough to have Le’Veon sit out at least one more game.
Then all of a sudden, the Steelers got coldcocked by a Philadelphia team nobody gave a shot to win the game. The Eagles not only won by 31 points, but limited Big Ben and company to just 3 total points and shut them out in the second half. Whether it was the Steelers just shutting it down knowing they just didn’t have it that day or a sign of things to come remains to be seen. Regardless, PIT hasn’t dropped a home game in its last five tries and stands 5-0 SU and 4-1 ATS the last five times it hosted the Chiefs.
Matchup to Watch
I’m interested to see how the Chiefs ground game fares against the Steelers No. 4 ranked rush defense. Pittsburgh is conceding just 75.3 yards per game at 3.8 yards per carry, and while it has had issues containing opposing aerial attacks, KC’s ranks amongst the bottom third in the league.
Jamaal Charles could be back for this one, but it’s more important that Spencer Ware gets going since he’ll still likely make the lion’s share of carries. His ability to come up with some big gainers will allow for KC’s struggling offensive line to not have to deal with the pressure Pittsburgh will bring on lengthy passing downs. If Kansas City can’t run the ball, it’ll have no shot.
Chiefs vs. Steelers Free Picks
I’m still trying to wrap my head around this. The Chiefs and Steelers rank No. 31 and No. 32 respectively in sacking the quarterback. The former is averaging 1.0 sack per game while the latter 0.3. That’s just unfathomable! Granted, Pittsburgh went up against two of the better offensive lines at disallowing sacks in the Redskins and Eagles, but it also went up against the worst in Cincinnati’s yet only came up with one sack. KC’s best front wall faced was the Jets last week, but it still only managed one total sack against middle of the road O-Lines in San Diego and Houston.
That sheds a bit of light as to why this year’s total is at 47 while last year’s was almost a touchdown lower and the game still combined to go under the total. If Smith and Big Ben have all day to throw the pigskin, Jeremy Maclin and Antonio Brown are going to feast upon each of these defenses. Pittsburgh just allowed a rookie to torch it for three spins and a couple touchdowns and possesses the second worst pass defense in the league. Look for this matchup to play against the norm and cash tickets for those that back over the odds at BookMaker.eu.
Chiefs vs. Steelers Score Prediction: Steelers 27, Chiefs 24
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