Toledo, Ohio - The Pittsburgh Steelers (7-4-1) and Oakland Raiders (2-10) will be playing with a very different mindset in Week 14. The Steelers are attempting to stave off the Baltimore Ravens, who are threatening from behind in the AFC North by just percentage points. The Raiders will relish the role of the villain, and look to play spoiler.
Pittsburgh blew a commanding 23-7 lead on Sunday night before the Los Angeles Chargers scored 23 unanswered points to secure a 33-30 win. LA had a game-winning field goal from Mike Badgley as time expired.
James Connor has been a Steelers fan’s best friend this season. He has filled in for Le’Veon Bell, who decided to sit out for all of 2018. While Connor has been excellent this year, rushing for nearly 1,000 yards and 12 touchdowns, but he is out this week with a sprained ankle, and it will be interesting to see who picks up the slack in the run game.
Raiders Corner Gareon Conley did a great job with Tyreek Hill this past weekend, holding the Chiefs elite wideout to a very mediocre game. Unfortunately for Oakland, the Steelers have two elite receiving threats on their team. Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster will give the Raider’s secondary fits. This would have been a problem any week of this season, but the Steelers are hotter now than they have been all season.
Wideout Antonio Brown had a season-high 154 receiving yards on Sunday Night Football. This was aided by longtime starter Ben Roethlisberger, who leads the NFL in passing yards (3,945). In his last four games, Roethlisberger has 1,385 passing yards, to go along with 10 passing touchdowns and six interceptions. In his last game against Oakland, he tossed for 334 yards, as well as two touchdowns and one interception.
JuJu, Big Ben and Antonio will likely stay hot this week. Wideout Antonio Brown has at least one touchdown TD catch in nine of his past 10 games played. Brown has 81 catches, totaling 1,028 yards on the season and fellow wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster has 83 catches, totaling 1,104 receiving yards. This makes them the only pair of teammates with 80-plus catches and 1,000-plus receiving yards in 2018.
As for the Raiders, they could not maintain pace with high-powered Kansas City Chiefs in Week 13, losing 40-33 while allowing 469 total yards.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes shredded Oakland's secondary as he threw for 285 yards and four touchdowns. Derek Carr did his best to match his counterpart, posting 285 passing yards and three touchdowns.
Schray’s Pick: Steelers win
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