Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills Betting Preview

Sunday, December 13, 2020, Bills Stadium, Orchard Park, New York, 8:20 p.m. ET

Steelers at Bills Betting Preview: Steelers (+2.5/-105), Bills (-2.5/-115)

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers are coming off their first loss of the season, a somewhat shocking home outcome against Washington. This is a chance to see how Pittsburgh will respond to this situation after opening with 11 consecutive victories.

Despite the overwhelming success this season, it has been an unsettling time for the Steelers because of schedule changes. If this game is played Sunday night, it will mark the first time in three weeks that they play on the originally designated date.

The Steelers were disappointed in their physicality in the loss to Washington, so expect that to be an emphasis against a team that’s clearly on the rise. The Steelers should be out to prove a point against a team that will be jockeying with them for AFC playoff position if Pittsburgh drops its second game in a row.

Buffalo Bills

The Bills returned from their second trip in a month’s time to Arizona — this time with a victory Monday night against the San Francisco 49ers. So it’s a short turnaround for the Bills, with the impact perhaps lessened by Pittsburgh’s recent scheduling issues.

With quarterback Josh Allen leading the charge, Buffalo has become one of the most efficient teams in the NFL. He threw for four touchdowns with a 139.1 quarterback rating in the San Francisco game.

The Bills’ only loss in their last six outings came in the ‘Hail Mary’ defeat to Arizona, so it might be hard to find a team on much more of a roll than Buffalo. Their only loss at home came to Kansas City, which is the only other one-loss team in the league besides Pittsburgh.

Steelers at Bills Betting Pick for Week 14

Until last year’s 17-10 victory for the Bills in Pittsburgh, the Steelers had won six straight in the series — and the Bills failed to score more than 10 points in three of those results. But these Bills are a different group and this is a chance to prove it. 

They’re often compared to the New England Patriots because they’re in the same division, but this year showing that they can compete successfully with the Steelers might mean more.

Steelers at Bills Betting Pick:

Bills 28, Steelers 24

Steelers at Bills Best Bet for Week 14

The way Allen is directing the Bills’ offense, it’s easy to expect that points could come in bunches. Expect the playing conditions to be a factor in some way because a December night game in Buffalo is bound to create some issues, especially with showers in the forecast. Still, there’s enough offense in play for these teams, especially figuring that Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will be motivated to get back on track. Despite some rough moments against Washington, Roethlisberger has averaged more than two touchdown throws per game this season (with just seven total interceptions).

Steelers at Bills Best Bet: OVER 45.5 total points (-115)

OddsUSA’s NFL Best Picks for Week 14

Happy Thursday football fans and welcome to our weekly column where we attempt to predict the outcome of several contests for the upcoming slate of NFL games. In Week 13, the New York Giants upended the Seattle Seahawks, while the Washington Football team handed the Pittsburgh Steelers their first loss of the season.

That said, picking games isn’t always as easy as it seems. Last week, I predicted victories for the Tennessee Titans, Las Vegas Raiders, and the Kansas City Chiefs. The Titans fell to the Browns. The Raiders barely squeaked by the winless New York Jets, and the Chiefs edged the Denver Broncos by a 22-16 margin. On the heels of another 2-1 week, my overall season record stands at 30-8. Now that you’ve brought up to speed, here’s a look at my outright picks for Week 14. 

Week 14 NFL Best Bet No. 3: 

Houston Texans (2-5) at Chicago Bears

To say the Chicago Bears have had a tough season would be an understatement. Don’t get me wrong, I knew their 5-1 start was based on good fortune more so than the team being good. And the last six weeks have proven just that. In Week 13, the Bears led by a double-digit margin (30-20) with two minutes left in the fourth quarter. That should have been a big enough lead, right? Wrong. Detroit scored a TD to close the gap to three points and their defense forced a turnover deep in Bears’ territory that eventually led to another touchdown. The final result was a 34-30 loss in a game they had no business losing, especially since the offense had one of its better performances of the season. So, with that said Bears fans, if you’re thinking of putting money on your team this week, I highly recommend that you reconsider. 

James’ pick: Texans hand Bears another loss

Week 14 NFL Best Bet No. 2:

Pittsburgh Steelers (-2.5) at Buffalo Bills

This is probably one of the best matchups in Week 14. On one side of the coin, you have a Steelers’ team that is smarting a bit following a 23-17 loss to the Washington Football team. Oh, and I should probably mention that Pittsburgh led that game 14-0 before scoring just three points the rest of the way. Meanwhile, Josh Allen is coming off one of his solid outing in Buffalo’s 34-17 win over the San Francisco 49ers. In that contest, he was 32 for 40 for 375 yards to go along with four touchdowns. 

The Steelers’ defense has recorded 44 sacks, which leads the NFL. That’s an impressive stat, to say the least. However, here’s an interesting tidbit via CBS Sports. There have been five games in which Allen has been sacked multiple times. In those outings, he is averaging 300 passing yards per game and two touchdowns. Even more important, the Bills have won each of those contests. This is going to be a very competitive game as the current point-spread indicates (courtesy of William Hill Sportsbook). The betting line is even smaller on the Sporting News website (-1). In the end, though, look for the Steelers to make a statement in this one following two lackluster performances against Baltimore and Washington. 

James’ pick: Steelers get back into the win column

James’ NFL Best Bet of Week 14:

Green Bay Packers (-8) at Detroit Lions

The Detroit Lions have dropped two of their previous three contests. And the 34 points they produced against the Bears was more than what they put up in the last two games combined. Conversely, Green Bay has won four of its last five games and Aaron Rodgers is putting up MVP-caliber numbers. Although the teams have split the last four meetings at Ford Field, with a division title and a chance to remain in contention for the top spot in the conference, the Packers will come out on top here. 

As a side note, the over/under on this matchup is 55. Given the fact that the Packers are averaging 31.3 points per outing and the Lions are at 23.8, taking that 55 may be a safe bet. Another bet you may want to consider is the number of yards Aaron Rodgers will have. Since he has failed to reach the 250-yard plateau only three times through 12 games, betting that he will surpass that mark is probably a good call as well.

James’ pick: Packers roll to third straight win

Super Bowl Odds Update: Week 14

Happy Wednesday football fans. I can’t believe that we’re already three-fourths of the way through the NFL season. The upcoming stretch will separate the contenders from the pretenders. Last week, the list of title favorites includes the Kansas City Chiefs, Pittsburgh Steelers, New Orleans Saints, and the Seattle Seahawks. 

Ironically, two of those teams were victorious, while the other two teams suffered disappointing losses. With that said, here’s a look at where the title contenders rank based on their performances from Week 13. 

Third-Best Super Bowl Odds: 

Tie: Pittsburgh Steelers & Green Bay Packers (+800)
Last Week: Packers (NR). Steelers (+550)

The Pittsburgh Steelers were the lone undefeated team going into Week 13. In their recent outing against the Washington Football Team, it appeared that Pittsburgh was on its way to adding another win to its resume after jumping out to a 14-0 lead. Unfortunately, the wheels fell off the wagon after that. Washington’s defense came to life, holding the Steelers to just three points the rest of the way en route to an unexpected 23-17 victory. It was the second straight week in which the Steelers played down to the level of their opponent, and this time, they paid the price. However, considering that they are tied for the best record in the NFL, along with having one of the best scoring defenses, it wouldn’t be wise to count them out just yet.

Meanwhile, following a minor setback against the Indianapolis Colts a few weeks ago, the Packers have strung together a pair of victories over the Chicago Bears and the Philadelphia Eagles. Not only are the Packers on their way to another division title, but they are also a top-10 team in rushing; a top-five team through the air and they have the second-best offense in the NFL. I should also mention that their 31.6 points per contest is tops in the NFL. While the Packers haven’t always played up to their potential, this a team that opposing defenses do not want to face in the postseason. 

Second-Best Super Bowl Odds:

New Orleans Saints (+500)
Last Week: (+550)

A week ago, the Saints were tied for the second-best title odds with the Steelers. But thanks to the Steelers’ recent loss, the Saints have sole possession of second place on our weekly list. While their 21-16 win over the lowly Atlanta Falcons wasn’t overly impressive, it marked the team’s ninth straight victory following a 1-2 start. On top of that, Drew Brees has been on the shelf nursing an injury over the last three games. During that stretch, backup quarterback Taysom Hill hasn’t been lighting up the scoreboard, but he’s made enough plays under center to keep the Saints’ offense operating at a respectable level. And from a defensive standpoint, New Orleans has given up a total of 28 points in their last three games. Given the fact that New Orleans continues to win games with one of its best players out of the mix, this is a team that you should keep a watchful eye on come playoff time. 

Super Bowl Odds Favorites: 

Kansas City Chiefs (+210)
Last week (+275) 

The defending champion Kansas City Chiefs continue to sit atop the leaderboard in the title odds race. Although their 22-16 win over the Denver Broncos was a lot closer than most expected, the Chiefs are now tied with the Steelers for the best record in the NFL. Not only that, this team has one of the most explosive offenses in the league. In addition to compiling over 300 yards through the air over the past five games, Kansas City is ranked first in overall offense (427.6 yards per game), passing yards (314.4) and they have the second-highest scoring offense at 30.8 points per contest. No, the Chiefs don’t have a great running game, and they certainly have room for improvement from a defensive standpoint. At the same time, putting your money on this team would not be a bad idea at this point. 

Super Bowl Odds Update: Week 13

Hello NFL fans and welcome back to our weekly column where we’ve been discussing the list of teams that are considered legitimate title contenders. A week ago, the Kansas City Chiefs, the undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers, New Orleans Saints and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rounded out the coveted list.

For the second straight week, we have two teams that share the second-best odds. Since that is the case, I’m going to include four teams on the list again this week instead of three. With that said, here’s a look at the teams with the best odds to win the big game in 2021 (according to Unibet).

Third-Best Super Bowl Odds:

Seattle Seahawks (+900).
Last week (NR)

As many of you may recall, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had the third-best odds last week. But following a 27-24 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, they have fallen from our top-three list. The Seattle Seahawks have been a mixed bag this season. They started the season with a 5-0 record and then they went on to lose three of their next four contests. Fortunately, Seattle has righted the ship somewhat as they have bounced back with a pair of wins against the Arizona Cardinals and the Philadelphia Eagles. While the Seahawks are one of the top-scoring teams in the league (ranked third – 31 points per contest), they are also ranked dead last in total defense. That said, unless they can find a way to improve on that side of the football, the chances of them going on a deep playoff run are pretty slim right now.

Second-Best Super Bowl Odds:

Tie: Pittsburgh Steelers & New Orleans Saints (+550)
Last Week: No change for either team

To avoid sounding like too much of a hater, I’m going to give the New Orleans Saints some kudos. First, they have won eight straight following a 1-2 start. Second, a few of those wins have occurred with Drew Brees on the shelf with an injury over the past two-and-half games. Taking that into consideration, the Saints deserve a little praise for their 9-2 record.

On the other hand, the Steelers must be feeling slighted to an extent. Sure, they’ve had a couple of unimpressive outings during the season. Their 24-19 win over the Dallas Cowboys was nothing to be overly excited about. And head coach Mike Tomlin stated that the team’s recent performance against the Baltimore Ravens could be categorized as junior varsity. But despite the game being rescheduled twice, the Steelers still came out on top 19-14.

In addition to being the only unbeaten team in the NFL, the Steelers are ranked seventh in rushing defense (105.7 yards per game), third in overall defense (298.9 yards per game), and first in passing defense (193.2 yards per outing). Given those factors, the Steelers should have the better odds here and it will be interesting to see if that changes at all should both of these continue playing well down the stretch.

Super Bowl Odds Favorites:

Kansas City Chiefs (+275)
Last week (+300)

The Chiefs have been considered the odds-on favorite to win it all for quite some time now and that trend continues going into Week 13. While the Saints have won nine straight, the Chiefs have been on a bit of a roll in their own right. After a 40-32 setback against the Las Vegas Raiders in Week 5, the defending champs have reeled off six straight, including a 27-24 win over the Buccaneers in Week 12. In that contest, Patrick Mahomes II had his best game of the season, throwing for 462 yards to go along with three touchdowns. With the Chiefs have found their footing in the passing game, this team will be tough to stop the rest of the way. Simply put, KC and Pittsburgh should be the teams to keep an eye on as the season draws to a close.

Even the Chiefs’ hype game is the favorite!

Best Betting Picks for NFL Week 11: Doubling Down on the Packers, Chiefs, and Steelers

Happy Thursday football fans and welcome back to another edition of our best picks column. There was an interesting trend that unfolded in Week 10; four teams that finished below .500 last season posted victories. The list includes the Cleveland Browns, Las Vegas Raiders, Arizona Cardinals, and the Miami Dolphins. Not only that, but these teams are a combined 24-12 this season and they’re all in the playoff hunt. This just proves that anything can happen on any given Sunday.

Last week, I predicted wins for the Baltimore Ravens, New Orleans Saints, and the Green Bay Packers, but hedged my bets by saying the Ravens wouldn’t cover while the Saints and Packers would win big. Although the Saints did win big while losing Drew Brees, the Packers only beat the fiesty Jaguars by four.

As a result, I posted a 2-1 mark to improve to 23-6 on the season. The picks for the upcoming week will be somewhat challenging as there is only one matchup that offers a double-digit point spread. So, without further delay, here’s a look at my best bets for Week 11.

Week 11 NFL Best Bet No. 1: Green Bay Packers at Indianapolis Colts

This is a classic game featuring one of the better offensive teams in the league squaring off against one of the better defensive units in the league. The Packers are ranked third in scoring (30.8 points per outing), sixth in total yards (395.8), and passing yards per game (274.3). Green Bay also falls just outside the top-10 in rushing, averaging 121.4 yards per contest on the ground.

As good as the Packers are from an offensive standpoint, the Colts’ defense is just as formidable. Indy has allowed the second-fewest passing yards per contest (198.7) and they are ranked third in rushing yards allowed per contest (91.8). Along with that, the Colts are the top team in the NFL in yards per play (4.8) and third in rushing yards per attempt (3.5). Talk about a difficult pick.

Despite the Colts’ stout defensive stats, I’m predicting that Rodgers and the Packers will have another good outing in what should be a competitive game.

James’ pick: Packers win by a field goal

Week 11 NFL Best Bet No. 2: Kansas City Chiefs (-7) at Las Vegas Raiders

For those of you who have been following my picks this season, it is no secret that KC is one of the teams that I go with a lot. And I don’t make any apologies for doing so, either. After all, they are the defending champions and they are 8-1.

However, this matchup against the Raiders could be a shot at redemption for the reigning NFL champs; the Raiders handed the Chiefs their only loss – a 40-32 victory back in Week 5.

There are two reasons I’m going with the Chiefs here: First, they are a perfect 4-0 since losing to the Raiders and they have won those games by an averae of 16 points per contest. Second, Andy Reid is 18-3 in his career coming off a bye week. Considering those factors, I’m picking the Chiefs to split the season series in a close one.

James’ pick: Chiefs get revenge but don’t cover the spread

James’ NFL Best Bet of Week 11: Pittsburgh Steelers (-10) at Jacksonville Jaguars

Remember when I mentioned there was one matchup on this week’s slate of games that featured a double-digit favorite? Well, this is the one. On one side of the coin, we have a Jaguars’ squad that has dropped eight straight games. Sure, they hung tough with the Green Bay Packers but they’re still just 1-8 on the season.

Furthermore, the Steelers are a top-five team in passing yards allowed per contest (211.3) and they are a top-10 squad in rushing yards given up per outing (106.8). On top of that, the Steelers have the third-best scoring defense, giving up just 19 points per contest.

Based on how they played against Green Bay, the Jaguars will make this a competitive affair. In the end, though, the Steelers will prevail and remain the lone unbeaten team in the NFL.

James’ pick: Steelers win AND cover the spread

2020 NFL Hall Of Fame Game Canceled, Enshrinement Postponed

First Preseason game of 2020 season scheduled for August has been canceled

It looks like we are going to have to wait longer than expected for our first football game of the 2020 NFL season. Early this morning, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced that the opening game of the 2020 preseason, the NFL’s annual Hall of Fame Game, has been canceled. Also, the league announced the enshrinement ceremony for the 2020 Hall of Fame class will be postponed to next year.

Pro Football Hall of Fame CEO and President David Baker voiced his opinions on the decision. He explained that the health and safety of Hall of Famers and football fans came first and foremost when making this decision. “The health and safety of our Hall of Famers, fans and volunteers who make Enshrinement Week so special remains our top priority… the Hall will honor the Centennial Class of 2020 next August, along with what promises to be an equally spectacular Class of 2021…”

The Hall of Fame Game was scheduled to take place on August 6th, 2020. The game was supposed to be a matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Dallas Cowboys. However, now that the Hall of Fame Game is no longer taking place, the Steelers and Cowboys will be expected to report to training camp like the rest of the teams in the league in late July.

The 2020 Pro Football Hall of Fame class will now be honored next summer in 2021. Eight individuals were elected to the Hall of Fame this year. Steve Atwater, Isaac Bruce, Steve Hutchinson, Edgerrin James, and Troy Polamalu, Head Coaches Bill Cowher and Jimmy Johnson, and three contributors: Steve Sabol, Paul Tagliabue, and George Young, will now all be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame next summer with the class of 2021.