Free Picks: Pittsburgh Steelers vs Cincinnati Bengals

Steelers vs Bengals NFL
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals, NFL, Heinz Field

The Pittsburgh Steelers remain the only undefeated team in the NFL this season, but only by the hair on their chinny-chin-chin. In classic Steelers fashion, the undefeated squad nearly dropped a game to the Dallas Cowboys, who have half the team in the infirmary and some guy in street clothes calling the plays. Nonetheless, they are now 8-0, and they’ll have to bounce back from an ugly performance against a young Bengals team that was not short of moxy or confidence in beating the Tennessee Titans 31-20 last week.

The Steelers had a lot more trouble than they were expecting when they flew down to Arlington to take on the ailing Cowboys last week, but somehow they emerged from the debacle unscathed with a 24-19 win. It has been something of a consistent throughout the Mike Tomlin era in Pittsburgh: the Steelers always play up to their quality opponents, and often fall in trap games against poor teams they haven’t taken seriously.

But this year is different than those previous, not just because the Steelers are 8-0 for the first time in franchise history, but because they also came out of one of those classic trap games with a gutsy win instead of a deflating defeat. In Week 10 they will take on the Bengals, who find themselves in the cellar of the AFC North at 2-5-1, though they’ll surely be buzzing after that shocking and dominant victory over the seemingly mighty Titans. Despite their impressive showing against Tennessee, taking the undefeated Steelers -7 point spread at -110 odds on sports betting site 888sport seems like a no-brainer here.

As far as we’re concerned, the final undefeated team in the NFL will remain undefeated through Week 10—sorry Larry Csonka, you’ll have to wait another week to celebrate with your ‘72 Dolphins pals. After a performance as poor as the one they put forth against the Cowboys last week, you can expect the Steelers to bounce back nicely in a divisional game. Not only was Big Ben ineffective for much of last week’s game, but the defense was getting picked apart by Garrett Gilbert in his first career NFL start as well.

No doubt, the team will buckle down during the week to ensure they get back on track and avoid playing down to their competition for a second straight week. The Bengals have been impressive in spots, but rookie number one overall pick Joe Burrow and the offense are still figuring things out on a weekly basis. Not to mention the dominance the Steelers have exhibited against the Bengals of late: Cincy has not beaten Pittsburgh since 2015, a streak of 10 straight losses.

The Steelers dominate the Bengals like no other team, winning 33 of the 42 meetings between the two outfits since the turn of the century. Not to mention they’ve been winning by an average of 8.8 points over the past eight meetings. There has been some speculation that Roethlisberger may not play, and though that possibility is very unlikely to materialize, it might.

So, if by some off chance the 17-year veteran doesn’t suit up, you can throw all of these predictions out the window, because the Pittsburgh backup, Mason Rudolph, simply doesn’t have what it takes to be a starter in this league. In fact, if Rudolph is in there, I would probably suggest taking the Bengals spread instead.

Stats

  • Pittsburgh is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games against AFC opponents.
  • Cincinnati has gone 7-20-1 ATS in the last 28 meetings.
  • Pittsburgh has gone 5-0 ATS after allowing 350+ yards the previous week.
  • Cincinnati is 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games in Pittsburgh.

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Alex is an alumnus of Ryerson University's RTA Sport Media program, a contributing NHL, NBA, and MLB writer in the BetPicks.ca team. He has been writing on sports, betting, and fantasy contests for several years, including pitstops as an NFL Editor for theScore and as one of the lead NBA news writers for fantasy sports site FantasyPros. As a lifelong athlete, bettor, and sports fan, Alex is uniquely qualified to help you reach the sports betting success that you've always dreamed of and your wife never believed you could achieve. Follow Alex on Twitter

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