Steelers vs. Bengals: TV Info, Spread, Injury Updates, Game Time and More
The Week 2 edition of Monday Night Football features two AFC North teams in desperate need of a bounce-back victory when the Pittsburgh Steelers travel to the Queen City to take on the Cincinnati Bengals.
Week 1 was especially harsh on Pittsburgh as it welcomed Tennessee to town. The ensuing result saw the Steelers physically dominated in a 16-9 loss while losing center Maurkice Pouncey and linebacker Larry Foote for the season.
Cincinnati was much more fortunate in its opener, losing on the road to Chicago 24-21, but not suffering any major health setbacks. A.J. Green was electric with 162 receiving yards and two scores, but costly turnovers and a mediocre defensive showing wound up costing the Bengals.
The following is everything fans need to know about the huge rivalry matchup.
When: Monday, Sept. 16, at 8:30 p.m. ET
Where: Paul Brown Stadium
Live Stream: NFL Sunday Ticket
Betting Lines (via Bovada)
- Over/Under: 41 pts
- Spread: Cincinnati (-7)
Steelers Injury Report (via NFL.com)
|Heath Miller||TE||Knee||Limited Participation in Practice||Out|
|Curtis Brown||CB||Illness||Limited Participation in Practice||Doubtful|
|Cortez Allen||CB||Ankle||Did Not Participate in Practice||Out|
|Steve McLendon||DT||Hamstring||Full Participation in Practice||Probable|
|Le'Veon Bell||RB||Foot||Did Not Participate in Practice||Out|
|Shaun Suisham||K||Left Hamstring||Full Participation in Practice||Probable|
Bengals Injury Report (via NFL.com)
|Jeromy Miles||S||Hamstring||Did Not Participate In Practice||Doubtful|
|Brandon Ghee||CB||Concussion||Did Not Participate In Practice||Out|
|Mike Pollak||G||Knee||Did Not Participate In Practice||Out|
|Vontaze Burfict||LB||Thigh||Full Participation in Practice||Probable|
|Andrew Whitworth||T||Knee||Limited Participation in Practice||Questionable|
Can Pittsburgh's Offensive Line Keep Ben Roethlisberger Upright?
Last week the Steelers' offensive line allowed Ben Roethlisberger to be sacked five times. Losing a three-time All Pro in Pouncey only furthers the issues that have plagued the franchise for years.
As if losing Pouncey weren't enough, Pittsburgh now has a date with one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL, led by tackle Geno Atkins (12.5 sacks in 2012). He's surrounded by other quality rushers such as Michael Johnson (11.5 in '12) and Carlos Dunlap (seven in '12).
The Cincinnati line experienced a down week in Chicago, tallying no sacks. Adequate pressure was applied throughout, but quarterback Jay Cutler was able to get the ball out fast enough in order to avoid the stout Cincinnati pass rush.
Pittsburgh has much to learn from Chicago in that regard. The Bengals sacked Roethlisberger seven times in two contests a year ago, but the blueprint has been written by Chicago—get rid of the ball as fast as possible to neutralize the pass-rush threat Cincinnati exhibits.
As one of the NFL's most bitter rivalries, any Pittsburgh versus Cincinnati showdown has a chance of swinging either way.
History says Pittsburgh wins. Cincinnati has not defeated the Steelers in Cincinnati since 2009, when the Bengals swept the AFC North en route to the postseason. Before 2009, the last time Cincinnati successfully defended its home turf against Pittsburgh was in 2001.
Which team wins?
In recent years the road team has dominated this series, but expect that to change in 2013.
Cincinnati is the superior squad in a sheer talent sense, and barring a few critical fumbles and interceptions in the opener, would be entering the contest at 1-0. The defense will overwhelm a battered Pittsburgh line and the offense has too many weapons for the Steelers to match up with personnel-wise.
As a growing team at home on prime time, expect the Bengals to correct the transgressions from Week 1 and score a major Monday Night Football victory while the Steelers take a nosedive to 0-2.
Bengals win 20-17
Follow B/R's Chris Roling on Twitter for more news and analysis @Chris_Roling
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