Redskins vs. Steelers: Spread Info, Line and Predictions

Ryan DavenportContributor IOctober 26, 2012

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 21:  Robert Griffin III #10 of the Washington Redskins  in action during their game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on October 21, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

In Week 8, the Washington Redskins' Robert Griffin III, already thought of as the NFL's next big thing, will go up against one of the most dominant teams of the last decade in the Pittsburgh Steelers.

On Sunday, the quarterback duel will feature two of the NFL's biggest names in Griffin and two-time Super Bowl winner Ben Roethlisberger, so there's no shortage of star power.

Quarterbacks aside, these two teams have been inconsistent thus far in 2012. The Redskins, despite Griffin's weekly heroics, enter Week 8 with a 3-4 record, while Pittsburgh heads into the weekend at 3-3.

Looking ahead, the Redskins and Steelers have the talent and manpower to be above .500 by the end of the season, and Sunday's matchup in Pittsburgh will be a crucial game.

Here's a preview of the game's storylines, betting advice and everything you need to know about this much-anticipated matchup.

When: Sunday, Oct. 28 at 1 p.m. ET

Where: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pa.

Watch: Fox (check local listings)

Live Steaming: NFL Sunday Ticket

Radio: ESPN 980 (Washington), WDVE 102.5 FM (Pittsburgh)

Spread (via OddsShark): Pittsburgh, -4.5

The Steelers are rightfully favored to win at home, especially against an up-and-coming team like Washington, but there's certainly potential for an upset here. The Skins haven't been outclassed by anyone all season, and with the Steelers looking more vulnerable than what we've become accustomed to, one can't count Mike Shanahan's team out.


Over/Under (via OddsShark): 47

If there's one thing we've learned about the Redskins, it's that their offense is more than capable of putting up points with anyone, as they've failed to score at least 20 points only once all season. By comparison, the Steelers have broken the 20-point barrier in all but two of their six games, so the over for this one looks promising.


Injury Report (via CBS Sports)


S Will Allen: Probable (ankle)

LB Chris Carter: Probable (hamstring)

RB- Jonathan Dwyer: Probable (not injury related)

LB Brandon Johnson: Questionable (hamstring)

RB Rashard Mendenhall: Questionable (achilles)

S Troy Polamalu: Questionable (calf)

RB Isaac Redman: Questionable (ankle)

LB Adrian Robinson: Questionable (concussion)

K Shaun Suisham: Questionable (left ankle)


LB London Fletcher: Questionable (hamstring, head)

WR Pierre Garcon: Doubtful (foot)

CB Cedric Griffin: Probable (hamstring)

CB David Jones: Probable (achilles)

S Brandon Merriweather: Questionable (knee)

CB Josh Wilson: Probable (shoulder)

DE Doug Worthington: Probable (calf)

RB Darrel Young: Probable (hamstring)


Fantasy Big Plays

Steelers: Antonio Brown, WR

With Rashard Mendenhall's status for Sunday's game still uncertain, the Steelers could be relying on Jonathan Dwyer once again in Week 8, which likely means Mike Tomlin goes with a more pass-oriented offense.

If that's the case, Antonio Brown will once again be a prime candidate to put up big numbers, especially against a Redskins' secondary that gave up a number of deep completions to the Giants last Sunday.

Brown was a big contributor against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 7 with 96 yards receiving on the day, and he'll put up even better fantasy stats against Washington on Sunday.


Redskins: Alfred Morris, RB

Though Robert Griffin III has deservedly received the vast majority of the credit for the Redskins' success on the offensive side in 2012, rookie running back Alfred Morris has been dynamite for Washington in the backfield.

Against the Steelers, who boast the second-ranked pass defense in the league, Shanahan will likely opt to go with a run-heavy offense on Sunday, meaning that Morris will get all the opportunities he needs to make an impact.

With 658 rushing yards and five touchdowns through seven games, Morris has been a consistent difference maker for Washington. Athough Griffin will certainly get his chances to run as well, Morris will put up bigger numbers on the ground against Pittsburgh.


Steelers Key to Victory: Big Ben and the Pass Attack

The Redskins can put points on the board, but they haven't been able to defend against the pass. That's why they're a 3-4 team at this point in the season.

With Mendenhall potentially out, the Steelers can't expect Dwyer to out run Morris and Griffin, so the Steelers will need Roethlisberger to pick apart the Skins' league-worst pass defense.

He's more than capable of quietly putting together a three-touchdown, 300-plus yard performance on Sunday, and if he does, Pittsburgh will be 4-3 going into Week 9.


Redskins Key to Victory: Run the Steelers into the Ground

With the top-ranked rush offense in the league, Griffin and Morris have the talent to carry the Redskins to a victory on Sunday, even if Washington doesn't manage a single passing touchdown.

Griffin's ability to take off down the sidelines when he eyes an opportunity is Shanahan's ace in the hole. If the Steelers continue to be dominant when defending the pass, Griffin and Morris will have to be at their best.


Prediction: Redskins 29, Steelers 24

The Redskins came within one drive of beating the defending Super Bowl champions on the road last Sunday. With Morris and Griffin continuing to dominate on a weekly basis, Washington's confidence is only growing. They'll steal one from Mike Tomlin and the Steelers on Sunday.


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