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Previewing the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Kansas City Chiefs AFC Wild Card showdown

The Pittsburgh Steelers are hitting the road for the Wild Card round of the AFC Playoffs.

NFL: DEC 26 Steelers at Chiefs Photo by Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are hitting the road for their first playoff game of a 2021-2022 AFC Playoffs. With the regular season in the rear view mirror, all the focus now turns to the single-elimination tournament, and the potential it being Ben Roethlisberger’s final NFL game. In other words, there are plenty of reasons to tune in on Sunday night. The Chiefs have been a heavy AFC favorite all season, while the Steelers seem lucky just to make the playoffs.

Here is the game preview for the Steelers and Chiefs for their AFC Playoff matchup in Kansas City.

Teams (Records)

Pittsburgh Steelers: 9-7-1 (2nd place in AFC North)
Kansas City Chiefs: 12-5 (1st place in AFC West)

Odds (Courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook)

Steelers (+12.5)
Moneyline: Steelers +460; Chiefs -650

Last 5 Games

Steelers: 3-2
Chiefs: 4-1

Injury Report


Game Status

RB Najee Harris (Elbow) - Questionable

Friday, January 14

RB Najee Harris (Elbow) - Full

QB Ben Roethlisberger (Pectoral/Right Shoulder) - Full

DB Arthur Maulet (Concussion) - Full

T Dan Moore Jr. (Ankle) - Full

G Trai Turner (Knee) - Full


Game Status

RB Darrel Williams (Toe) - Questionable

RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire (Shoulder) - Out

Friday, January 14

RB Darrel Williams (Toe) - Limited

RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire (Shoulder) - DNP

T Orlando Brown (Calf) - Full

LB Willie Gay (Wrist) - Full

WR Tyreek Hill (Heel) - Full

TE Travis Kelce (Hip) - Full

S Tyrann Mathieu (Knee) - Full

CB L’Jarius Sneed (Knee) - Full

OL Andrew Wylie (Glute) - Full

*Players on the Reserve/COVID-19 List are not included on the injury report

News and Notes

It wasn’t long ago, Week 16 to be exact, where the Steelers boarded a flight to play the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. After the Steelers’ opening possession resulted in a Pressley Harvin III punt, the game was flipped upside down and the route began. The end result was a 36-10 shellacking in front of a nearly national audience.

Fast forward to the 2021-2022 AFC Playoffs and the Steelers, the No. 7 seed, are preparing for another game against the No. 2 seed Chiefs. Will the outcome be different for the Steelers? There are a lot of moving parts in this rematch, and you have to start with players who missed that Week 16 matchup.

The Steelers were without Pat Freiermuth, Chris Wormley, Devin Bush and a slowed T.J. Watt who was dealing with cracked ribs. It isn’t as if the Chiefs weren’t without one of their best weapons considering Travis Kelce missed the game due to being on the Reserve/COVID-19 List. Will these players returning have an impact on the outcome of the game? For the Steelers it certainly can’t hurt. On top of those players who are now in the lineup, the team could also get JuJu Smith-Schuster back off Injured Reserve (IR).

It’s all hands on deck for the postseason, and the Steelers will need a legendary performance from many of their players if they want to upset the 12.5-point favorite Chiefs in their house. Could this be Ben Roethlisberger’s last game, or is there still some magic left for the old gun slinger? It might take a magic bullet to get the job done, but Roethlisberger has shown those do exist multiple times throughout his career.

The Steelers are looking for their first playoff win since 2017.

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