The 8-5-1 Steelers take to the road against one of the top teams in the NFL in the form of the New Orleans Saints. With the Ravens defeating the L.A. Chargers on Saturday Night, the Black-and-Gold feels the pressure once again. Will Jaylen Samuels replicate his magic of a week ago against the league’s top rushing defense with James Conner out again? Will Ben Roethlisberger have a game without a pick? Can the defense stop Drew Brees? Will the Steelers slip out of the playoff picture because of Boswell going wide right again? With these questions, storylines, and more, I’ve compiled a list of predictions (some basic, and some utterly idiotic) to look for in this Week 16 contest:
- JuJu Smith Schuster forgoes a tribute the 24th anniversary of gangster Whitey Bulger fleeing Boston police and hiding out for 16 years, but instead celebrates a touchdown by passing out Mardi Gras beads.
- However the party goes awry when Ramon Foster lifts his shirt to get more beads.
- Ben Roethlisberger throws an interception, but he makes up for it with four TD passes on the day.
- Continuing his success against big men, Joe Haden holds receptions-leader Michael Thomas to less than five receptions and 50 yards.
- Not that they’ll ever wrestle his job away from him, but the indoor conditions fail to help Chris Boswell and the snake-bitten kicker misses again.
- Antonio Brown scores twice with JuJu Smith-Schuster ailing.
- The Steelers running game nearly doubles the 79 ypg allowed by the league’s number one rushing defense.
- Drew Brees puts together his best passing performance since the opener with 400+ yards passing.
- T.J. Watt sacks Brees twice.
- The 46th anniversary of the Immaculate Reception offers no magic this time around as a late Roethlisberger heave falls to the turf.
- When the dome empties, the Steelers fall on the road by the score of Saints 30, Steelers 28.
Will any of this actually happen? I’ll bet at least one or two. Heck, maybe every one of them. Be sure to post your predictions — basic or bizarre — below.