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Bengals at Steelers in AFC North Match-Up on Sunday Night

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Preview

When: Sunday, December 15th 2013 at 8:30pm ET
Where: Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Watch: NBC

After losing two games in a row the Pittsburgh Steelers 5-8 (6-7 ATS) need to win their remaining three games in order to have any type of shot at making the playoffs. The Cincinnati Bengals 9-4 (8-4-1 ATS) on the other hand are close to winning the AFC North.

Live Cincinnati vs. Pittsburgh Week 15 Odds

Bet on the Bengals vs. Steelers at the Bovada Sportsbook

The betting lines for this match-up haven’t moved since they were released and I can’t see the total or spread moving much. Cincy is favored by –2.5 points and is unlikely to hit the key number of –3 points. The total seems low, but really isn’t with these two teams.

Can Andy Dalton Lead Cincy to Another Win

Andy Dalton is still throwing too many interceptions (16), which may hurt the Bengals come playoff time, but he has also put up big numbers apart from the turnovers. Dalton has completed 62% of his pass attempts for 3419 passing yards and 25 TD’s (87.7 QBR).

Cincinnati has just been above average on offense this season. They average 25.7 PPG (10th), 252.9 PYPG (12th) and 115.8 RYPG (14th) on offense, which isn’t great. However, Cincy does have a balanced offense, which most teams don’t have in the NFL right now.

In week 2 the Bengals showed how balanced their offense was in a 20-10 win over Pittsburgh. Dalton threw for 280 yards (1 TD) and the running backs (Green-Ellis & Bernard) combined for 113 rushing yards (1 TD) on 30 carries. They need to replicate that output.

Pittsburgh has been falling apart defensively the last couple weeks, as they’ve allowed 56 points in two games. The Steelers give up 24 PPG (15th), 221.8 PYPG (7th) and 120.2 RYPG (24th) defensively this year and the Bengals should have success running the football.

There is a chance on snow at Heinz Field on Sunday and I expect to see the Bengals rush the football 30+ times again. Pittsburgh has had trouble stopping the run and Cincy should be able to control the tempo of the game by utilizing their running back duo.

It took awhile for the Steelers offense to get rolling, but they’ve definitely improved the last couple months. On offense the Steelers average 22.4 PPG (19th), but in their last six games they’ve scored 27.7 PPG. Big Ben has also increased his passing yards per game.

Pittsburgh ranks #7 in passing yards (266.8 PYPG), but their run game has been horrendous (77.4 RYPG – 31st). Roethlisberger has to be able to have a big game if the Steelers want to win at home, as the Bengals defense is amongst the best in the NFL this season.

Cincinnati ranks in the top 10 in just about every major defensive category. The Bengals allow 18.8 PPG (6th), 222.4 PYPG (8th) and 98.2 RYPG (5th). Pittsburgh will struggle to move the football and it wouldn’t surprise me if Pittsburgh were held to 10 points again.

Players to Target in Daily Fantasy This Week

Cincy has to get Bernard more touches because he has been great. Last week he had 12 carries for 99 rushing yards and 4 receptions for 49 receiving yards. He didn’t get into the endzone, but in week 2 against the Steelers he got into the endzone twice.

Green-Ellis is still getting a lot of the goal line touches, as last week he had 17 carries for 48 rushing yards and 2 TD’s. Bernard should be getting more carries, as he has the breakaway speed plus he can pick up the tough yards. Look for him to have a big game.

I think Le’Veon Bell will have trouble running the football on Cincy, so the Steelers are going to need some big plays. Antonio Brown is having a big season. He has 90 receptions for 1241 yards and 7 TD’s. Last week he hauled in 5 catches for 138 yards and 1 TD.

Bengals vs. Steelers Picks

Pittsburgh needed to win at home against the Dolphins last week. After blowing that game I can’t see them bouncing back and Cincy will be giving it 100% because they want to lock up the AFC North. This will be closer than some think, but the Bengals will cover.

ScottThis article was written by Scott

Scott is one of the original degenerates working for MobileSportsBetting.com. Although he's most successful betting on NFL football and international soccer, he's also active in UFC and NHL hockey betting.

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