Sunday, November 15, 2020, Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. ET
Bengals at Steelers Betting Preview: Steelers (-7.5/-360), Bengals (+7.5/+290)
The Steelers get their first look at No. 1 overall pick Joe Burrow, who has quickly established himself as the leader of the Bengals’ offense. The Bengals had two weeks to prep for Pittsburgh’s blitz packages but there’s still concern about the personnel in front of Burrow.
Guard Xavier Su’a-Filo (ankle) was cleared to practice Wednesday, and center Trey Hopkins (concussion) was a full participant. However, left tackle Jonah Williams (stinger) was limited Wednesday, while right tackle Bobby Hart (knee) and running back Joe Mixon (foot) remained out.
Burrow has 25-plus completions in six games this season. Generating a ground game to balance the system is the next goal on coach Zac Taylor’s checklist. Unless the offensive line comes together this week, the Steelers’ defensive front seven personnel will be too much to handle.
Availability is the No. 1 question for the undefeated Steelers (8-0), who opened the week placing tight end Vance McDonald on the COVID/reserve list and later added quarterback Ben Roethlisberger as a high-risk close contact.
Mason Rudolph took all the first-team snaps this week and Roethlisberger’s earliest possible clearance day is Saturday. Head coach Mike Tomlin insists the 17-year veteran doesn’t need the practice and will dial into video calls and review practice film this week to prepare to start.
Of course, there’s ample evidence to back up Tomlin’s theory. Roethlisberger has feasted on Cincinnati defenses in his career, completing 63.4 percent of his passes for 7,310 yards, his highest yardage total against any team. Pittsburgh is 23-7 in games he has played against the Bengals.
The Steelers listed wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster as questionable. He didn’t practice Wednesday.
Offensive lineman Jerald Hawkins, running back Jaylen Samuels and linebacker Vince Williams are isolating for five days as high-risk close contacts of McDonald.
Bengals at Steelers Betting Pick for Week 10
Neither team had a typical week and preparation was strained on either side with remote meetings and key personnel absent. The Steelers are far more prepared to thrive without the benefit of their usual routine and picking on the Bengals’ defense is old hat for Roethlisberger.
Bengals at Steelers Betting Pick:
Steelers 27, Bengals 16
Bengals at Steelers Best Bet for Week 10
Burrow can move the chains, but the Steelers hold advantages at nearly every turn in this one. Unless the Steelers enter the game shorthanded, the line is being overly kind to the Cincinnati kid.
Bengals at Steelers Best Bet: UNDER 47.5 total points (-110)