The Cincinnati Bengals once owned the AFC North and the Pittsburgh Steelers and now they are languishing in the cellar for this December 12th tilt. The Pittsburgh Steelers should be softened up for this game after their brutal game against the Baltimore Ravens. Mike Heath will be a definite scratch after his concussion in last weekends game and Ben Roethlisberger will be a start after suffering a broken nose courtesy of Haloti Ngata.
Cincinnati Bengals Defense vs Pittsburgh Steelers Offense
The Cincinnati Bengals defense has been beaten up early in games and they have not been able to slow down the better runners in the NFL. The Cincinnati Bengals are allowing 123 yards per game on the ground which ranks among the bottom of NFL run defenses. As a pass defense the Cincinnati Bengals are holding opposing quarterbacks 216 yards per game which is a little better than aver among NFL pass defenses.
Ben Roethlisberger and his Pittsburgh Steelers offense has not performed as a well oiled machine to this point of the season. Some of this relates to Roethlisberger missing the first four games due to a suspension. Another reason for the low production of the Pittsburgh Steelers offense is the lack of a running game behind Rashard Mendenhall.
Mendenhall has been improving over the last few weeks and this game against the Cincinnati Bengals could be a 100 yard game for him. The Pittsburgh Steelers offense has a decided edge over the Cincinnati Bengals defense.
Pittsburgh Steelers Defense vs Cincinnati Bengals Offense
This years version of the Pittsburgh Steelers defense is better than ever but they have been beaten up at times. The loss up front of Aaron Smith on the Pittsburgh Steelers defensive line has taken away the capability of gambling from LaMaar Woodley and James Harrison as blitzing linebackers. The Pittsburgh Steelers are still the best NFL defense against the run and they are holding opposing rushers to just 64 yards per game.
Carson Palmer and the Cincinnati Bengals offense has been a huge disappointment this season. Terrell Owens and two Cincinnati Bengals NFL Draft picks are the best receivers on the team as the season comes to a close.
Tight end Jermaine Gresham and wide receiver Jordon Shipley have been a nice surprise for Carson Palmer but the lack of a consistent running game has hurt the Cincinnati Bengals offense. The Pittsburgh Steelers defense has a huge edge over the Cincinnati Bengals offense.
Cincinnati Bengals vs Pittsburgh Steelers -11: Pick Against the Spread & Breakdown
The Las Vegas Hilton Superbook has posted the Pittsburgh Steelers as a huge 11 point favorite over their AFC North rivals the Cincinnati Bengals. 11 points is a huge number for a division rivalry and the last double digit favorite within their division was the San Diego Chargers favored by two touchdowns over the Oakland Raiders last week.
The Cincinnati Bengals are 2-4 against the spread on the road and 2-4 straight up on the road. The Pittsburgh Steelers are 3-2 against the spread at home and are 3-2 straight up at home. Take the Cincinnati Bengals +11 over the Pittsburgh Steelers but the Steelers will win straight up.
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