By: Jason Green
Pittsburgh Steelers (11-3 SU 6-8 ATS) vs. Houston Texans (4-10 SU 7-7 ATS)
The Steelers had their eight-Game win streak snapped in their last Game because of the controversial catch rule where they had a late TD overturned. While they have already wrapped up the AFC North they still have a lot to play for. They lost to the Patriots in their last Game and have the same record and will have to finish with a better record to get home field advantage in the playoffs. The Steelers have also not secured a first round bye, as they are in 2nd place in the AFC one Game up on the Jacksonville Jaguars, who hold the tiebreaker since they beat Pittsburgh earlier this season. The Steelers are a very balanced team on the season ranking 10th in ppg and 7th in points against.
At 5 dimes sportsbook the Steelers are the 10-point favorite with a total of 44.5.
The Texans have gone through a nightmare season with only Four wins, have lost Four in a row, and were blown out in their last Game. They are down to their 3rd straight QB and a couple of their key players in WR DeAndre Hopkins and DE Jadeveon Clowney are banged up and questionable for this Game. The offense has been decent on the season, not in the last Game, ranking 15th in the league in ppg, but their defense ranks dead last giving up an average of 27.1 ppg.
These teams have not met since the 2014 season.
The favorite is 4-0 ATS in the last Four Games between these teams.
The Steelers were at home in their last Game and lost to the New England Patriots 27-24. They not only had a late TD overturned, but Ben Roethlisberger was then picked off in the end-zone ending the Game when they could have kicked a chip-shot FG to send the Game to overtime. Pittsburgh out-GAined the Pats 413 yards to 360 yards and played well against the run only allowing 77 rushing yards and they forced one turnover. Big Ben passed for 281 yards with two TD and one INT and JuJu Smith-SChuster led the team with 114 receiving yards. Star WR Antonio Brown, who leads the league in receiving yards, was hurt in the Game and is out for this Game. Le’Veon Bell, who leads the league in rushing yards, had 117 yards on the ground with a TD and averaged 4.9 yards per carry.
In their last Game the Texans were on the road and they were embarrassed losing 45-7. They were out-GAined 464 yards to only 186 yards, only rushed for 87 yards, and they were down 31-at the half. Tom Savage is likely out for this Game so T.J. Yates will get another start and in the loss to Jacksonville he was only 12/31 for 121 yards with a TD and a pick. DeAndre Hopkins led the team with 80 receiving yards and hauled in the TD catch, but may not go in this Game with an injury. Alfred Blue and LAmar Miller combined for the 87 rushing yards for Houston and with Yates under center they have to play well and move the chains on the ground. The Texans will be facing a Pittsburgh defense that ranks 5th in the league against the pass and 8th against the run.
The Steelers are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 Games, 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 Games facing a team with a losing record, and in their last 5 Games they have an Over record of 4-1.
The Texans are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 Games facing a team with a winning record, 2-5 ATS in their last 7 Games, and in their last 7 Games they have an Under record of 5-2.
Jason’s Pick: The Texans were throttled in their last Game and the same will happen in this one even though they are at home. Big Ben and Bell will have big Games and the Pittsburgh D will shut Houston down. The Steelers will easily win this Game and cover the spread.