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Steelers Air it Out, Dominate Bengals to Stay Undefeated



PITTSBURGH — In a game that started off sloppy, both because of the weather and the play on the field, the Steelers eventually managed to separate themselves from the Bengals, airing it out for a 36 to 10 win at Heinz Field.

Cincinnati’s defense held the powerful Pittsburgh offense in check most of the first quarter. Chris Boswell connected on a couple field goals, one thanks to a Bengals fumble, but quarterback Roethlisberger eventually found his many weapons, throwing for 333 yards with 27 completions off 46 attempts. Diontae Johnson, JuJu Smith-Schuster and Chase Claypool (twice) all found themselves in the end zone throughout the game, grabbing Roethlisberger’s 4 touchdown passes. Roethlisberger’s touchdown passes set a franchise record for games with multiple touchdown passes and moved him into 8th place on the NFL’s all-time list.

While Joe Burrow was able to complete some big plays, like a 51 yard bomb to Tee Higgins in the first half, TJ Watt and company proved to be too much for the star rookie quarterback out of LSU to handle. And unlike some of the Steelers previous opponents, Cincinnati failed to make it competitive late, as Pittsburgh earned one of their most convincing and dominating wins of the year. Burrow finished the game going 21 for 40 for 213 yards and 1 touchdown pass. He was sacked 4 times.

The Steelers continue their remarkable undefeated start to the 2020 season, now sitting at 9-0. It’s even possible Pittsburgh could still get better, and most importantly healthier, as the season progresses. Corner back Mike Hilton missed another game despite wide speculation he would return in the team’s first home game in a month to face Cincinnati.

Mike Tomlin’s team goes back on the road next week when the Steelers travel to Jacksonville to take on the struggling Jaguars. Odds will certainly favor Pittsburgh picking up double digit wins, something the Steelers have not accomplished in 3 years, on Sunday, November 22nd. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 pm. and the game will be broadcast on CBS (KDKA locally).


T.J. Watt Owns Second-Best Defensive Player of the Year Odds



Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt holds the second-best odds in the league to win NFL Defensive Player of the Year at 7/4, courtesy of BetOnline.

Watt’s nine sacks are tied for the third-most in the NFL, and he is tied for second with 14 tackles-for-loss. He also has 32 total tackles, an interception and a league-leading 30 hits on the quarterback.

Three other Steelers defenders are also listed as contenders for the award, with defensive end Cam Heyward (25/1), defensive end Stephon Tuitt (25/1) and safety Minkah Fitzpatrick (33/1) all trailing Watt.

The only defender with better odds than Watt is Pittsburgh native and Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who is seeking his fourth Defensive Player of the Year award. Donald leads the NFL with ten sacks.

Watt finished tied for third in NFL Defensive Player of the Year voting in 2019 with Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Shaw Barrett. Watt led the league with eight forced fumbles and recorded 14.5 sacks, but New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore ultimately took home the honor.

Watt has been selected to two Pro Bowls, and was named First-Team All-Pro in 2019. He has also received NFL Defensive Player of the Week honors three times.

His brother J.J. of the Houston Texans saw his odds shorten to 33/1 following a dominant showing on Thanksgiving against the Detroit Lions, where he recorded four tackles and a pick-six.

Watt will look to improve upon his candidacy when the Steelers host the Baltimore Ravens on Wednesday afternoon. He has 3.5 sacks and two forced fumbles in seven career games versus Baltimore.

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Matt Canada Will Be Able to Coach for Steelers vs. Ravens on Wednesday



While the Baltimore Ravens will get a handful of players back onto the field with their game against the Pittsburgh Steelers pushed back to Wednesday, the Steelers will also be getting a benefit from the arrangement.

Quarterbacks coach Matt Canada, who tested positive for COVID-19 last week and was expected to miss the game when it was scheduled for Tuesday, will be able to coach, Steelers spokesman Burt Lauten said on Tuesday.

Canada, the Steelers’ first-year quarterbacks coach, has been credited for making overall schematic changes to the Steelers’ offense coming into this season, though offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner calls plays on game days.

The Steelers will still be without special teams coordinator Danny Smith, who also tested positive last week. Smith will be replaced by assistant wide receivers coach Blaine Stewart.

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TV Forces Steelers Into Pair of Weekday Afternoon Games



Get ready for some weekday afternoon football.

The Steelers’ Week 12 game against the Baltimore Ravens has been rescheduled to Wednesday, Dec. 2 and will kick off from Heinz Field at 3:40 p.m.

As a result of that postponement, the Steelers’ Week 13 game against the Washington Football Team has been moved from Sunday to Monday, Dec. 7 and that game will kick off at 5 p.m.

Both of the early afternoon weeknight times are a result of television commitments. NBC, which will broadcast the game against the Ravens on Wednesday, did not wish to preempt its coverage of the lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree in New York, which is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m.

A broadcast network has not been announced for the Steelers’ Week 13 game against Washington, but the 5 p.m. start time is necessary because ESPN holds an exclusive national broadcast window for their Monday Night Football franchise. The Buffalo Bills will play the San Francisco 49ers in that game.

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