Today the Philadelphia Eagles (1-2-1) will be traveling across the state to the 3-0 Pittsburgh Steelers (1pm ET Sunday, live on Fox).
The Pittsburgh Steelers were the first team to be adversely affected by the ongoing pandemic and it was no fault of their own. Their game last week versus the Titans was postponed to week 7 and their contest against the Ravens was pushed to week 8, which was originally their bye week. They were forced to take their bye early in week 4, which has given them extra time to prepare for Philadelphia.
The Eagles are coming off their most impressive performance of the year and were able to beat the 49ers on the road. They finally got in the win column and did it as 6-point road dogs.
So which of these teams can win through today? Read on for our Philadelphia Eagles vs Pittsburgh Steelers predictions and USAbetting will try to answer that question in this preview.
Eagles’ Injured Offensive Line Versus Dominant Defensive Line
This is one of the more important NFL matchups of the afternoon. The Eagles’ offensive line is decimated with injuries. They have been without starting guard Brandon Brooks and offensive tackle Andre Dillard all season. They lost starting tackle Jason Peters to a toe injury and reserve guard Isaac Seumalo to a knee injury.
The only starters they have left on the line are tackle Lane Johnson and center Jason Kelce. Johnson has been dealing with an ankle injury and was limited in practice on Thursday. He looks set to play but how effective will he be against an explosive Steelers front? A hobbled offensive tackle is problematic against a speedy defensive end like Bud Dupree. Starting wide receiver DeSean Jackson and safety Rodney McLeod were also limited in practice. Starting cornerback Avonte Maddox and wide receiver Alshon Jeffery both did not practice on Thursday and don’t look like they will be suiting up today.
The Pittsburgh front seven is one of the best in the NFL and will look to exploit an inexperienced Eagles’ offensive line. The Eagles will be starting former Aussie rugby player and 7th round pick Jordan Mailata at tackle, rookie undrafted free agent Nate Herbig at guard and 6th round pick Matt Pryor at tackle. This unit gave up three sacks last week against the 49ers.
This lack of depth and experience could prove disastrous against a Pittsburgh team that ranks first in the NFL averaging 5.0 sacks per game. They rank third in the NFL with 15 sacks on the season despite playing one less game than the other teams ranked in the top five. TJ Watt and Bud Dupree lead the way with 3.5 and 2.5 sacks respectively. They should prove to be a handful for the inexperienced Eagles’ line.
Expect the Steelers to apply a heavy dose of pressure to Carson Wentz and disrupt their hobbled offense. In week one Washington was able to cause havoc and sacked Wentz eight times in a 27-17 victory. The Eagles rank 29th in the NFL giving up an average of 3.5 sacks per game.
Our Preview’s Concluding Philadelphia Eagles vs Pittsburgh Steelers Picks & Betting Predictions’ Verdict
We are going with the home favorites in this spot. The Steelers are currently -7pts on the spread with the betting sites catering for players from the States and this number may go up a bit with the betting public likely joining in on the action.
The Steelers are coming off an extra week of rest and have to be itching to get back on the field to prove their 3-0 start was not a fluke. The Eagles are quite banged up and could have used the rest the Steelers were afforded. They are also coming off a road game in San Francisco and will be on the road again this week.
The Steelers are a good football team both offensively and defensively. Expect the defense to lead the way and have quarterback Carson Wentz rattled all game, which will likely end in a few turnovers and short fields for the Steelers offense, which can score fairly well. They rank 13th in the league averaging 26.7 points per game.
One trend that lends to the Steelers is how poorly teams do the week following a win as a sizable underdog. Since 2010 teams coming off an upset win as a dog of six or more points have gone 13-39-1 the next game.
I am not afraid of this being a spread of a touchdown and feel quite confident that they will comfortably win and cover. I just don’t see how the Eagles’ beat up line can contain the Steelers’ explosive pass rush, which will make it difficult to move the ball and put up points. I see this as a comfortable 27-13 victory for Pittsburgh. So the recommended wager for our preview and the culmination of our Philadelphia Eagles vs Pittsburgh Steelers predictions is:
- Bet the Pittsburgh Steelers -7pts on the spread @ biggest odds of -108 with BetOnline.