Pittsburgh Steelers (8-5) at Atlanta Falcons (5-8)
|Date & Time||Sunday December 14, 2014, 1:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Atlanta Falcons +1.5 -- Over/Under: 51
The Atlanta Falcons and the Pittsburgh Steelers face off on Sunday in the Georgia Dome in a battle of playoff hopefuls.
The Atlanta Falcons are 5-8 and coming off of a loss on Monday Night to Green Bay but that is still good enough for first place in the NFC South. The Falcons are averaging 25.2 points and 381 yards per game and they are led by QB Matt Ryan who has completed 65.5 percent of his passes with 25 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. Steven Jackson anchors the Atlanta ground attack with 52 yards and six touchdowns and Julio Jones has 93 catches and six touchdowns and Roddy White has 59 catches and six touchdowns. The Falcons defense is allowing 26.3 points and a NFL worst 410.8 yards per game but they are plus five in turnover ratio. Paul Worrilow has 116 tackles, Kemal Ishmael has 78 tackles, and Kroy Bierman has 65 tackles and 3.5 sacks. The Falcons offense appears to be in full gear but the defense hasn’t been holding up their end of the bargain.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are 8-5 this season which is good enough for second place in the AFC North but it makes them part of the wide open race for the playoffs in the AFC. The Steelers offense is averaging 27.8 points and 427 yards per game and they are led by QB Ben Roethlisberger who has completed 6.5 percent of his passes with 29 touchdowns and eight interceptions. Le’Veon Bell is having a breakout year rushing for 1,231 yards and five touchdowns and catching 71 passes for another three touchdowns and Antonio Brown has 1-5 receptions and 11 touchdowns. The Steelers defense allows 24.5 points and 352.5 yards per game and they are minus two in turnover ratio. Lawrence Timmons has 104 tackles, Mike Mitchell has 61 tackles, and Cameron Heyward has five sacks. The Steelers have lost to some teams that should beat and have won what are considered their tougher games.
Atlanta is 5-0 against the spread playing on a Sunday following a Monday Night game, 5-2 against the spread in their last seven home games, and 2-5 against the spread after passing for more than 250 yards in their previous game. Pittsburgh is 2-5 against the spread following a win, 1-5 against the spread against a team with a losing record, and 5-2 against the spread after scoring more than 30 points in their previous game. The underdog has covered the spread in the last five meetings of these two.
This one is all about offense as the Steelers have one of the top rated offenses in football and the Falcons one of the worst defenses and throw in a red hot Matt Ryan and the over is the easy play. I will also have a play on who will cover the spread and I will post that in the Premium Area as well as on the App.