It appears Sam Bradford’s early season greatness is upon us once again. Last year the Vikings started off the season going 5-0, while Bradford set the NFL record for single-season completion percentage. We all know how the season ended for the Vikings, and they don’t want to repeat that finish. Week 2 will be a very good measuring stick between two teams with playoff aspirations.
Minnesota Vikings vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Point Spread: Steelers -7
Date: Sunday, September 17, 1:00pm ET
Location: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA
Point Spread and Betting Analysis
There’s not much recent history between these two teams. The last time the Vikings played in Pittsburgh was in 2009 and the Steelers won that home game 27-17 even though Ben Roethlisberger only completed 14 total passes for 175 yards in the contest. The Steelers defense returned two turnovers for touchdowns in that game and that was pretty much the difference. Also, these two teams did meet in London, England back in 2013, with the Vikings winning in a shootout 34-27. The Vikings are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games on the road overall, while the Steelers 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games overall.
Quarterback Sam Bradford is coming off arguably his best game as a professional as he tore apart the Saints on MNF. Bradford was pinpoint accurate going 27 of 32 for 346 yards and 3 touchdowns. While rookie running back Dalvin Cook set a Vikings first-year record racing for 127 yards on 22 carries (surpassing the mark of 107 yards set by Adrian Peterson). The Vikings hope to use this same balanced attack on offence at Heinz Field on Sunday, and a defence that held Drew Brees to just one passing touchdown, and the Saints ground attack to just 60 total yards rushing in game 1.
The Steelers had a surprisingly difficult time in week 1, edging the Browns in Cleveland 21-18. Le’Veon Bell was very mediocre with only 32 yards rushing on 10 carries; expect to see his workload drastically increase in the weeks to come. Receiver Antonio Brown was out of this world great, with 182 yards in the air, on 11 receptions. Ben Roethlisberger is 2-1 lifetime vs. Vikings in 3 career games.
Minnesota Vikings at Pittsburgh Steelers Prediction
Steelers 21 – Vikings 17