The line for their game on Sunday opened with the visiting Steelers favored, but has swung five points to the Jets in Week 6 action. The betting consensus at OddsShark.com was 50-50 as of Wednesday.
Point spread: The Steelers opened as 2.5-point favorites, but were 2.5-point dogs by Wednesday with the total at 40. (Line updates and Matchup report)
Computer Prediction: 14.7-9.9 Jets
Why the Steelers can cover the spread
Pittsburgh is 0-4 for the first time in 45 years, and 0-4 against the spread (ATS0, so good news is hard to come by, but good news can emerge from adversity. The Steelers still have a fighting chance, as long as Big Ben is behind center, and they haven't really been blown out yet this year. So maybe there's still hope.
If they could just get some production from rookie running back Le'Veon Bell, Roethlisberger might be more effective out of play action. Historically, the Steelers perform well in New York, going 6-2 ATS in their past eight road games against the Jets.
Why the Jets can cover the spread
New York is 3-2 straight up (SU) and a profitable 4-1 ATS this season, coming off of its upset of the Falcons in Atlanta on Monday night.
Rookie quarterback Geno Smith is coming off the best performance of his young career, hitting on 16 of 20 throws with three touchdowns and nary a pick to upset the Falcons. The Jets' defense ranks second n the league, both overall and against the run.
The home team has won seven of eight straight-up games in this series and the Steelers are limping to a 3-10 ATS run in their last 13 road games.
The OddsShark computer is calling for a Jets' 15-10 victory, but New York is coming off a short week while the Steelers had last week off. The Jets also have alternated wins and losses on a weekly basis so far and they won last Monday night. Plus, Pittsburgh has the grizzled vet at QB while Smith will be making his sixth career NFL start for the Jets.
In a tough call, the Steelers should be the better play, according to several handicapping theories.
- Pittsburgh is 6-2 ATS in its last eight games when playing on the road against the Jets
- Home team has won seven of past eight meetings
- Steelers are 3-10 ATS in their past 13 road games