Free NFL Picks: Back Broncos vs. Steelers In Divisional Playoffs

Joe Gavazzi

Friday, January 15, 2016 9:13 PM UTC

Friday, Jan. 15, 2016 9:13 PM UTC

The Pittsburgh Steelers travel to the mile high altitude of Denver for the final game in round two of the 2016 NFL playoffs. The game is scheduled to kick at 4:40 eastern as televised by CBS.

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NFL Pick: Broncos -7
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes


Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Denver Broncos 4:40 EST CBS
This line could range anywhere from Denver -3 to Denver -7, depending on the status of ailing skill position players for Pittsburgh.

These two met earlier in the season in Pittsburgh on December 20th. Denver bolted to a 27-13 halftime lead before the Steelers rallied back behind QB Roethlisberger for a 21-0 second half, and 34-27 victory. 

Regardless of the playing status of the Steelers’ triplets, Pittsburgh is lucky to be playing this game. They emerged with an 18-16 last season field goal victory at Cincinnati only because of the mental mistakes of the Bengals. On the Steelers’ behalf, they did outrush the Bengals 167-91 and profited from a +2 net TO margin. Should Big Ben play, it is noteworthy that he is 3-1 ATS as underdog in the playoffs. Even without WR Brown in the lineup, the Steelers have enough receiving talent in the persons of WR Wheaton, WR Bryant, and TE Miller to get the job done through the air. Though the experience of RB Williams might be missed, replacement RBs Toussant and Todman provide fresh legs and quickness to the Pittsburgh running game last week. 

For the Broncos, they enter with the #1 seed on the basis of ending the regular season with a pair of home victories against Cincinnati without QB Dalton, and against a game San Diego team by a score of 27-20. In that contest, a 27-20 Denver win, they had a 210-110 overland edge, rolled up 503 total yards, but were -4 in the net turnover column, and won the game despite committing five turnovers (no cover). Now they enter the playoffs with a week of rest (remember, just 13-23 ATS L9Y), and with a rested, healthy Manning, who is just 1-6 ATS at home with rest in the playoffs. But the Broncos have the #1 defense in the league in terms of yards gained, with a 283 YPG allowance, and own a league best 4.6 defensive YP play. Their 83/3.3 defensive front will go a long way to slowing Pittsburgh running game. Finally, the Broncos benefit from the strong situation of a home playoff game with revenge after losing a game last year as a playoff home favorite. It’s enough to give the Broncos an edge in this contest, a rating which could get much stronger if Pittsburgh QB Landry Jones gets the start. 

I invite you to put the NFL odds in your favor and join me in my NFL pick on the Denver Broncos.

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