Now that there is one regular season game is in the books for the Piittsburgh Steelers there’s no longer speculation surrounding the team. Of course, the narrative surrounding concen still exists, but it has shifted to go down different avenues. The contributors at BTSC have recorded their thoughts and predictions. Let’s see who’s closest to the mark and furthest from reality. Last week K.T. Smith came closest to the mark by forecasting a 27-17 Steelers triumph. Who will it be this week?
The Steelers push the all time series against Denver to 2-0. Ben Roethlisberger takes advantage of a weakened secondary forcing the national media to declare ‘he’s back’ Minkah Fitzpatrick will pick off the Gunslinging Drew Lock. Should be another easy win for the Steelers
Steelers 28, Broncos 13
The Kevin Dotson era starts off well. The Steelers will attack the Broncos lighter and quicker interior defensive lineman with inside runs, and attack their depleted corners and weaker linebacker group with JuJu Smith-Schuster and company. On defense I think the Steelers can get to Locke and force turnovers. Locke took only 5 sacks in his 5 starts in 2019, but he fumbled 3 times. Unless Mike Munchak has the Broncos line playing like the best unit in the NFL they are going to struggle. Bottom line? Ben is back, this game is at home, and the opponent is in trouble at cornerback. It’s not that complicated.
Steelers 27, Broncos 14
Bryan Anthony Davis
The Broncos struggled in their Monday Night opener, but I think this is a pretty good team despite the injuries. Drew Lock is dangerous and so are his young receivers, as well as Melvin Gordon. I’m worried about the patchwork offensive line of the Steelers, but I think they will eek out a win...2 AM style.
Steelers 24, Broncos 19
Heading into Week Two both teams are coming off a short week and this favours our Steelers. While there are no fans in the stands at Heinz Field, I still see the Steelers making a lot of ‘noise’ in this game. Last week the Steel Curtin 2.0 showed up in full force by containing the Giants in the back field. I predict this trend will continue as T.J. Watt and Bud Dupree pressure off the edge early and often. The Steelers are in a brilliant position to put the league on notice. Steelers to be 2-0, here we go!
Steelers 34, Broncos 9
The injuries along the offensive line are concerning, but the Broncos have their injury problems, as well. I think this game will play out much like the Week 1 affair against the Giants. It will be close in the first half, and Pittsburgh will pull away late. Look for the Steelers to open things up a bit more in the passing game this week and utilize their many aerial weapons.
Steelers 28, Denver 10.
The Steelers return home, and although there won’t be any fans in attendance it will have to feel good being back at the friendly confines of Heinz Field. On a short week, being able to stay at home is an advantage many might overlook. But when it comes to the game I feel like this is a game the defense is the difference. I expect them to get after Drew Lock and to cause him to work for every inch on Sunday. Some takeaways will give the offense some short fields and equate to more points. It will be close at first, but like in Week 1 the Steelers will pull away in the second half.
Steelers 24, Denver 13
So close, yet so far, last week with my prediction of a 28-17 scoreline, kind of like Barkley trying run for positive yardage, credit to K.T. Smith who was even closer! The Steelers head into Week 2 in their first home game of the season ready to show the rest of the NFL they mean business by outscoring, out-passing, out-tackling, out-sacking and overall out-playing the Broncos. Expect the Steelers’ defensive line and outside linebackers to pressure the Bronco’s quarterback, Drew Lock, early and often. The win relies on a strong performance from Kevin Dotson or Chuks Okorafor upfront, and maybe even both, in keeping Ben upright.
Steelers 31, Broncos 17
The Steelers have never beaten the Broncos when they faced them in the first two games of the season. The Steelers also don’t have a winning record against the franchise in their 32 previous games. None of that matters as the Steelers will find a way to get the victory even with the uncertainties along the offensive line. But since their goal is victory and not margin of victory, the Steelers fail to cover the more than a touchdown point spread.
Steelers 21, Broncos 16
This game hinges on one central theme: pass protection. If the Steelers patchwork offensive line can protect Ben Roethlisberger, the veteran QB should have a solid day against Denver’s zone coverage scheme and mediocre secondary. If not, and if the Broncos can get to Roethlisberger, things will be considerably different. My money says the Steelers find a way to keep Big Ben (mostly) clean and the result is a 2-0 start.
Steelers 24, Broncos 17
Both teams come into Week 2 of the 2020 NFL season pretty banged up. The Steelers offensive line has been decimated by injuries already, to the point rookie Kevin Dotson may be force to make an emergency start at right guard if starter David Decastro and veteran Stephen Wisniewski are unable to go. A less than optimal scenario to be certain.
Ben Roethlisberger appears to be back to his pre-injury form and his talented arsenal of skill position players should be too much for a Broncos defense dealing with the loss of some key starters to handle, providing the Steelers offensive line can keep Ben upright. The surging Steelers defense should apply some serious heat on young Broncos QB Drew Lock, eventually leading to multiple turnovers and favorable field position for the Steelers.
Steelers 27 - Broncos 17