Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals Preview, Prediction, Picks & Odds -- 11/28/2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 1 p.m. ET
Venue: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, OH
Where to watch: CBS

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Bengals -5
BetMGM: Bengals -4.5
Caesars: Bengals -4.5

Season record
Steelers: 5-4-1 (3rd place, AFC North)
Bengals: 6-4 (2nd place, AFC North)

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Steelers - Bengals preview and analysis


Last week
Steelers: lost 41-37 at Chargers
Bengals: won 32-13 at Raiders

This is an important week for the AFC North, but no game might be more gargantuan than the Pittsburgh Steelers facing the Cincinnati Bengals in Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday.

A Bengals win would sweep the season series over the once-powerhouse Steelers and keep Cincinnati in pace with the Baltimore Ravens in the division race. A Steelers win eases the qualms of the Pittsburgh faithful for one week, but not to the fullest.

The Bengals avoided a three-game losing streak last Sunday in a 32-13 win over the Las Vegas Raiders, but the game was close for the majority of three quarters. That's because Cincinnati's once-powerful offense hit a wall against the Raiders pass rush and was bailed out by numerous third-down penalties.

Joe Burrow was limited for the second week in a row throwing for 148 yards and a touchdown on 20 of 29 passing, by far an inefficient day of the deep passing game. Running back Joe Mixon was the hero last week, running for 123 yards and two touchdowns.

“We don’t talk a lot about big picture this season, what games we have coming up ... we just put ourselves in a position to control our destiny at this point,” Bengals coach Zac Taylor said. “As long as we take care of our business one week at a time then we’ll be in great shape.”

The Bengals have been about on par with the books as their season record would indicate. Cincy is 5-5 ATS this season but covered with ease (-2.5) against the Raiders. Not bad for a game that had only 288 total yards from that offense.

But while the Bengals should also feel good about how their defense limited Derek Carr and the Raiders, the Steelers are hoping that 37-point barrage against the Los Angeles Chargers is a sign of things to come. The defense, however, is another story.

Pittsburgh lost 41-37 on Sunday Night Football despite Ben Roethlisberger having one of his better games (273 yards, 3 TDs). Wide receiver Diontae Johnson had a breakout performance with seven receptions for 101 yards and one of those scores.

“I think we would take a win and a crappy offense over a great offense and not winning,” Roethlisberger said.

Cincinnati made a statement in that Week 3 win at Pittsburgh, holding the Steelers offense to 10 points. Whether that unit can do it again is a question, but a home crowd with a red-hot Trey Hendrickson on the defensive line could provide some results.

“Just because I think that we’re better doesn’t mean that all of a sudden the outcome could be different,′ Roethlisberger said. ”You’ve still got to go play them. Hopefully, our young guys have all grown up and the older guys are getting a little better too.”

Prediction


The Bengals have covered the last two meetings with outright wins after Pittsburgh took the last three. The under has also gone 5-1-1 in the last seven which doesn't bode well for either unit trying to get going. I trust the Bengals at home despite not looking as impressive overall the past few weeks. The Steelers still need that defining win and it won't happen this week. Bengals by 6

Betting trends


Steelers are 8-2 ATS in last 10 as underdog between 3.5 to 9.5 points.

Steelers are 10-10 ATS in last 20 after covering spread last game.

Bengals are 2-8 ATS in last 10 after a win.

Players to watch


Steelers: Star edge rusher T.J. Watt is looking for his sixth game in a row against the Bengals with a sack.

Bengals: Star rusher Trey Hendrickson is looking for his seventh straight game with a sack, the longest active streak in the NFL.

Statistical leaders


Steelers:
Passing: Ben Roethlisberger -- 2,259 yards, 13 TD, 4 INT
Rushing: Najee Harris -- 685 yards, 5 TD
Receiving: Diontae Johnson -- 714 yards, 4 TD
Defense: T.J. Watt -- 12.5 sacks

Bengals:
Passing: Joe Burrow -- 2,645 yards, 21 TD, 11 INT
Rushing: Joe Mixon -- 759 yards, 9 TD
Receiving: Ja’Marr Chase -- 867 yards, 8 TD
Defense: Trey Hendrickson -- 9.5 sacks

Don't miss our champion handicappers' free picks and expert football picks today. And if you enjoyed this Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals prediction, be sure to drop by every day for our daily NFL projections and previews.

Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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