TNF Patriots vs. Steelers Week 14 odds and predictions
Every week, VSiN will be doing an in-depth dive on the week’s Thursday Night Football game. In Week 14, that game features the Pittsburgh Steelers hosting the New England Patriots at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Patriots come into this game after having lost 6-0 against the Los Angeles Chargers last week. Meanwhile, the Steelers were stunned in a 24-10 home loss against the Arizona Cardinals last week. With that out of the way, keep reading for our Patriots vs. Steelers preview, picks and player props.
How To Watch Patriots vs. Steelers
Date: Thursday, December 7
Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
Channel: PRIME VIDEO (Amazon)
Patriots vs. Steelers Spread
This has the potential to be the ugliest Thursday Night Football game of the year. However, the Steelers are more likely to emerge from the chaos with a victory — and a cover. The reality is that this Pittsburgh team still has a great chance of making the postseason, while New England is looking like a threat to grab the top pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. So, these teams have opposite motivations heading into this game.
It’s just really hard to imagine the Patriots offense putting up enough points required to cover here. Last week, New England was shut out by a mediocre Los Angeles defense. In the passing game, Bailey Zappe looked just as bad as Mac Jones, if not worse. And the team’s best offensive player is now out for a few weeks, with Rhamondre Stevenson having injured his ankle on a hip-drop tackle. So, this struggling offense is in for some rough days to end the season, but a matchup with a Pittsburgh defense that is fifth in the league in Defensive DVOA has the potential to be a disaster.
Offensively, things aren’t much better for the Steelers right now, especially with Mitchell Trubisky now stepping in for an injured Kenny Pickett. But I do think Pittsburgh will be able to run the ball in this game, as the Steelers have rushed for at least 130 yards in five consecutive games. And overall, I don’t think Trubisky is all that bad. It’s obviously not the most inspiring option in the world, but Trubisky is a strong backup in this league. So, he should be able to fully execute the game plan.
Also, over the last two seasons, the Steelers are 9-2 against the spread in the second half of the season when facing teams that allow a completion percentage of 61.0% or higher. That means that Pittsburgh takes advantage of matchups against teams that can’t expose its inability to throw the football. On top of that, the Steelers are 7-0 ATS when playing at home after having scored 14 or fewer points over the last three seasons. So, they tend to find ways to turn things around after disappointing performances.
Patriots vs. Steelers Total
A few weeks ago, I compared the Steelers to the Iowa Hawkeyes on one of my weekly radio hits, and it has really become a perfect comparison at this point. We now have PIttsburgh playing in a game with a total that rivals what we saw out of Iowa in this year’s college football season, and I still think the Under is the only play here.
New England is coming off a game in which six total points were scored, and the Patriots have scored only 13 points over their last three games. New England did that against much lesser defenses than Pittsburgh’s, so the Pats are going to really struggle to put up points here. Meanwhile, New England has only allowed 26 points over its last three games, so it’s not like the team is getting lit up on the other side of the ball. So, I don’t see the Steelers putting an Under in jeopardy themselves.
The Under is also 7-1 in the games the Steelers have played against AFC opponents this year.
Patriots vs. Steelers Player Props
Allen Robinson Over 1.5 Receptions (+114 – Play to +105)
Robinson isn’t one of the top options in the Steelers passing game, but he’s coming off a game in which he had three catches in a loss to the Cardinals. Robinson has now had three receptions in two of his last three games, and I think getting him at plus-money odds to have two receptions is a good deal against New England. While Robinson isn’t in a great place in terms of Pittsburgh’s pecking order, he did spend three seasons with Trubisky in Chicago. So, there’s a level of trust there between the two, and I think Trubisky will be looking his way more than Pickett did.
Patriots vs. Steelers Prediction
I wouldn’t even want my worst enemy to spend a second watching this game, as it’s just going to be miserable. But I do think it’s worth laying the points with the home team and then forgetting you ever did it. There’s no need to see this one through, but Pittsburgh should get the job done here. It might be hard for the Steelers to muster up offense in this game, but I don’t see the Pats scoring much more than 10 or so points. That leaves the Pittsburgh offense with the reasonable task of scoring 17 or more.
Lean: Steelers -6
Head to our Pro Picks page to see how VSiN analysts are betting Patriots vs. Steelers!