There may not be two teams that hate each other more in the NFL these days than the AFC North rival Bengals and Steelers. Expect some chippiness Monday night when they close Week 13 in Cincinnati.
This hasn’t been much of a rivalry of late as the Steelers have won the past five meetings including playoffs. Cincinnati’s last home win against Pittsburgh was in December 2014.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals
When: Monday, 8:30 PM ET Where: Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati Point Spread: Steelers -6.5
Point Spread and Betting Analysis
In Week 7, the Bengals came out of their bye, were 4-point underdogs at Pittsburgh (which wasn’t off the previous week) and lost 29-14. Cincinnati was only down 20-14 at the half but obviously didn’t score again and had 19 total yards after intermission, with Andy Dalton picked off twice and getting sacked four times.
All of the Steelers’ Big 3 had good games: Ben Roethlisberger threw for 224 yards and two scores without an interception, Le’Veon Bell had 192 yards from scrimmage, and Antonio Brown caught a TD pass. Chris Boswell added a Heinz Field-record five field goals and accounted for all of Pittsburgh’s points in the second half. That was the Steelers’ biggest margin of victory during this winning streak.
The Bengals have covered just two of their past 10 in this series.
Pittsburgh (9-2 SU, 6-5 ATS) remains the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC but had to fight tooth-and-nail Sunday night to beat a struggling Packers team, 31-28. Boswell hit a 53-yard field goal with no time remaining in the Steelers’ sixth straight victory. Roethlisberger threw for 351 yards and four scores (his second game in a row with four TD passes), and the amazing Brown had 10 catches for 169 yards and two scores. He’s on pace for a fifth straight 100-catch season, which has never been done.
Pittsburgh had 462 yards of offence. Good-looking rookie receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster missed the game with a hamstring injury. Top cornerback Joe Haden remained out with his own injury and the pass defense suffered.
The Bengals (5-6 SU, 6-5 ATS) kept their wild-card hopes alive with a 30-16 victory over the state of Ohio’s junior varsity team Sunday, also known as the winless Cleveland Browns. Cincinnati entered with the worst rushing offence in the league but had 152 yards, led by rookie Joe Mixon’s 114. He was the team’s first 100-yard rusher since Dec. 11, 2016, and had the Bengals had totaled just 131 yards rushing combined in the previous three games. Mixon was the first Cincinnati tailback to have 100 yards rushing with at least 50 yards receiving (51) in the same game since Corey Dillon in 2002.
Dalton finished 18 of 28 for 214 yards with two touchdowns. Cincinnati scored the first five times it had the ball. Still, Coach Marvin Lewis likely won’t be overly thrilled with the win considering his team was outgained 405-361 by one of the NFL’s worst offences.
Steelers at Bengals Prediction
Pittsburgh 21, Cincinnati 17