Oakland Raiders take a three-game winning streak into Heinz Field when they
take on the injured riddled Pittsburgh Steelers. The Raiders are rested and
The Raiders, who are
coming off a bye week, will try to make it four wins in a row for the first
time in eight years. Pittsburgh will be looking to atone for a 39-26 loss to
the Patriots on Sunday night that wasn’t as close as the score would indicate.
The 39 points were the most they’ve allowed at home during a regular-season
game since they moved into Heinz Field in 2001, and the second-most overall in
that venue. In addition Pittsburgh will be in payback mode after losing to
Oakland last season 27-24. The Steelers are currently -9 point NFL betting odds
favorites to snap out of their ‘funk” while the total is 41.5.
offensive line has been hit hard by injuries. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s
blind-side protectors, left tackle Max Starks and left guard Chris Keomeatu are
out for the year. Not surprisingly with the backups playing, Roethlisberger was
sacked five times in the loss to New England. The Raiders who are second in the
NFL in sacks are licking their chops for a shot at Big Ben and his bruised and
Raiders head coach
Tom Cable has named Jason Campbell as the team’s starter for the rest of the
season. Campbell has thrown for 1,252 yards with seven touchdowns and five
interceptions. His numbers aren’t great but according to Cable the job is his
Here’s a closer look
at the crucial AFC showdown:
Oakland Raiders (5-4 SU & ATS)
Oakland has already
matched its win total from each of the past two years and a victory on Sunday
would extend the team’s longest winning streak in eight years. Denver’s rout of
Kansas City gave the idle Raiders a share of the top spot in their division,
the first time since 2002 that they’ve been on top this late in the season.
is due in large part to the play of Darren McFadden who for now has shed his
‘bust’ label. The first-round pick from Arkansas has accumulated 999 all-
purpose yards including 757 rushing yards with six touchdowns.
The Raiders pass
rush has become a nightmare for opposing offensive coordinators. Oakland is
second in the league in sacks with 27 and rank second against the run allowing
just 162 yards per game. They’ve been especially stingy of late surrendering
just 75.3 yards rushing per game over their past three outings.
Pittsburgh Steelers (6-3 SU & ATS)
Despite the Sunday
night shellacking at the hands of the Brady Bunch, the Steelers remain tied
with the Ravens atop the AFC North. Every team in the division lost in week 10,
including the Ravens, Bengals and Browns.
The Steelers defense
continues to do most of the heavy lifting. Pittsburgh is first in the league in
rushing yards allowed (63.2) and is holding opposing runners to just 2.8 yards
per carry. However the Steelers are vulnerable against the pass with opponents
putting up 252 yards per game through the air. Pittsburgh’s strategy will be to
shut down McFadden and force Campbell to beat them.
The SBR betting trends indicate that Oakland is 4-1 SU in its last five games but is 1-4 SU in
its last five road games. The total
has gone ‘over’ in 5 of Oakland's last 7 games while five of the Raiders last
seven games have topped the total.
Pittsburgh is 2-4
ATS in its last 6 games and is 2-5-1 ATS in its last 8 games at home. The
Steelers are 1-4 ATS in their last five games against the Raiders. The ‘over’
is 4-1 in Pittsburgh’s last five games.
The weather forecast
for Heinz Field is calling for partly cloudy skies and temperatures in the
50’s. Kick-off is slate for 1:00 pm Eastern with television coverage on CBS.