Bet Colts & Steelers to Go "Over" 48.5 With Your NFL Picks

Teddy Covers

Saturday, December 5, 2015 9:33 PM UTC

Saturday, Dec. 5, 2015 9:33 PM UTC

In this article we preview the Sunday Night Football matchup between the Indianapolis Colts and the Pittsburgh Steelers and provide an NFL pick on the total.

The Steelers have to be considered as the #1 Over team in the NFL right now, despite their 3-8 mark to the Under for the full season. Pittsburgh’s offense is essentially unstoppable, showing no drop-off despite Ben Roethlisberger’s ongoing injury concerns or the season ending injury to Le’Veon Bell.  And that steady stream of Unders from earlier in the season has left the betting market databases confused as to the true nature of the 2015 Steelers squad.

When we talk about Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant, Markus Wheaton, Darrius Heyward Bey and Heath Miller, that's one heck of a pass catching quintet for Roethlisberger to work with! DeAngelo Williams has proven that he is more than capable of filling in for the injured Bell. 

Both backs average exactly 4.9 yards per carry this year, and Williams was the Steelers second leading receiver out of the backfield last week, a huge safety valve for Roethlisberger when he’s under pressure.


Will Roethlisberger be Pressured?
The Colts don’t have much of a pass rush to keep Roethlisberger under pressure.  In fact, the Colts have notched only 19 sacks through their first eleven games.  An aging Robert Mathis leads the team with four sacks; not the player he was five or ten years ago.  That lack of a pass rush has led to a lack of turnovers created.  The Colts have only 17 takeaways this season.  Dwight Lowery and Vontae Davis are decent playmakers in the secondary, but after those two, the Colts are pretty thin in their defensive backfield. 

Facing a downfield passing attack of this caliber, I’m not expecting Indy to force many punts, field goals or turnovers.  In Chuck Pagano’s last three games against above average offenses, the Colts went 0-3 SU, allowing at least 27 points in each game.  No surprise here if the Steelers hang 27+ on Indy before the fourth quarter of this one!

But Pittsburgh’s defense cannot be trusted to hold any lead.  Pittsburgh, too, has issues with their pass rush when they’re not blitzing.  And even when they’ve been able to generate pressure on opposing QB’, those QB’s have shredded this secondary, week after week.  Last week, it was Russel Wilson throwing five TD’s without an interception against them.  In their previous game, it was Cleveland’s Johnny Manziel enjoying the single best game of his NFL career, throwing for 372 yards against Pittsburgh.  Prior to that, it was Oakland’s  Derek Carr throwing for 301 yards and four TD’s in a 38-25 shootout.


Hasselbeck Stepping Up
Matt Hasselbeck is no Andrew Luck, but he’s avoided mistakes like the plague, and he’s still capable of hitting receivers in stride downfield. Hasselbeck has thrown only two interceptions in 150 pass attempts.  Ty Hilton and Donte Moncrief are both speedy guys, capable of producing quick strike, big play touchdowns.

Neither team is trending Over on the NFL odds of late, giving us a very reasonable total to work with, especially when we consider that the final score of last year’s meeting was 51-34; a game that flew Over the total before halftime.  Indy just cashed back-2-back Unders for those placing  NFL picks in their last two games while Pittsburgh has cashed only three Over tickets in their first eleven games, thanks, in large part, due to Roethlisberger’s injury woes.  Big Ben should be good to go in this game, and that makes a very real difference for the Steelers offense as they step down in defensive class.

NFL Picks: Take Over 48.5 at The Greek

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