NFL Picks: Steelers at Patriots Point Spread
Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots Odds
When Pittsburgh and New England clash, at the Big Shaving Can on Sunday, it will be their 30th meeting since 1972 and their fifth NFL playoff match. The Patriots own a 3-1 playoff series lead over the Steelers as these teams split 1997 & '98 Divisional round games (28-3 NEP and 7-6 PIT) and New England posted 24-17 and 41-27 wins during the 2002 and 2005 AFC Championships respectively. This is also a rematch of a Week 7 regular season meeting on October 23, 2016.
New England won the NFL 2016 duel 27-16 and that has an impact on the +6 (EVEN) Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots odds that are posted at Bodog. Don’t forget, the Steelers were missing QB Ben Roethlisberger who was nursing a knee injury and sat out that match. After falling behind 14-0, QB Landry Jones helped Pittsburgh trim the lead to 14-13 before a couple of Patriots TD scores sealed the deal. New England is 4-1 in their last five AFC Championship games at home.
It was a tale of two seasons in Steel City as PIT stumbled out of the gate with a 4-6 record. Then, though not against the cream of the crop, the Steelers closed the regular season on a 6-0 run to claim the AFC North Division title. Their record wasn’t good enough to earn a bye but the Steelers continued to roll as they destroyed the Dolphins 30-12 in the Wild Card round and then used six Chris Boswell field goals to take out the Chiefs 18-16 during the Divisional Playoffs last weekend.
Playing in a sixth straight AFC Championship Game, and 15th overall in their franchise history, New England continues as model sports franchise. Without QB Tom Brady for their first four games, due to the “Deflategate” silliness, the Patriots went 3-1 and then posted an 11-2 record once Captain America returned. That run included seventh straight wins to end the season and then, following a first round bye, the Pats pummelled Houston 34-16 during Divisional round action last Saturday.
Steelers at Patriots Prediction
BET PITTSBURGH STEELERS +6 (EVEN) ATS AT BODOG (New England 36-17)
Mildly surprised by the NFC Championship line, understanding it’s due to key Green Bay injuries, we are not sure why Patriots are a touchdown favorite in this contest. It’s wise to remember that while Pittsburgh was without Big Ben during the first meeting, New England had the services of TE Rob Gronkowski who was then lost for the season three games later. During four career games against the Steelers, Gronk has racked up 424 yards and five touchdowns. Backup Martellus Bennett has a wonky knee and Pittsburgh “contained” Kansas City star TE Travis Kelce (77 YDS) last weekend.
While New England will do plenty of everything on offense, as they always do, expect Pittsburgh to pound the rock with Le’Veon Bell, use play action passing, and try to hit the big one more than few times with WR Antonio Brown. That was dynamite versus the Dolphins but just fairly decent against the Chiefs who held the Steelers to zero touchdowns at Arrowhead Stadium last Sunday. We took +6.0 points in the Packers vs Falcons NFC Championship fight and we are doing the same here. In a contest that may be decided by a field goal, we will take the +6 (EVEN) price posted at Bodog.
AFC Championship Future Odds 2017
As is the case with Green Bay and Atlanta, the 2017 AFC Championship futures odds are now the money line prices for the Steelers vs Patriots winner take all match. The lines are fluent as the Steelers have been gaining value all week. Considering that both teams are running red hot at this point - we expect a close game with the survivor moving on to Super Bowl LI in two weeks time.
Bettors are advised that this is the last chance to get in on the four-team Super Bowl LI prices as all of the NFL 2016/17 futures odds will vanish after the 2017 Championship Sunday action. If you are confident in any of the four remaining squads claiming the Vince Lombardi Trophy on February 5, 2017, at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, the prices are as rich as they are going to get tight now. This is particularly true for Green Bay (+375) and Pittsburgh (+425) as their money line odds are better than any prices bettors will receive if either of them participates in the NFL Championship.
According to current prices on the Bodog futures board - New England (+150) and Atlanta (+260) are the favorites to play in Super Bowl LI. The Patriots have owned the top chalk perch for weeks while the Falcons soared to the second spot after they were sporting a (+900) ML prior to the Wild Card weekend action. We will be back with a boatload of Super Bowl picks during the two weeks leading up to the big game so please stick with us. Once the Conference Championship matches kick off, bettors can follow the LIVE action with our scoreboard widget below. Enjoy The Games!
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