The Pittsburgh Steelers and Buffalo Bills are slated to face off in Week 5 of the 2022 regular season, and there are a lot of narratives between these two teams. For the Bills, they are trying to show they are the cream of the crop in the AFC. To prove they are not just AFC contenders, but AFC favorites. As for the Steelers, they turn the page to a new quarterback, and a new era of Steelers football, with Kenny Pickett now at the helm. There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding the team, and there remain huge question marks surrounding the team as they continue further into the regular season.
For those who follow the current betting lines, the Steelers opened as 14-point road underdogs, according to DraftKings Sportsbook.
(Odds/lines subject to change. T&Cs apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for details.)
At this point, it is time to check in and see who the pundits, who call themselves experts, like in this showdown in Buffalo this Sunday.
As you can imagine, this game in a Bills love fest. Every possible outlet, from ESPN, SB Nation, Yahoo! Sports, FOX Sports and CBS Sports alike are all-in on the Bills to win on Sunday.
Those are sites where people just check a box on a website and move on with their lives. However, there are some who spend more time pouring over these picks, and provide some analysis than just a winner and loser.
For those type of experts, one which is talked about a lot is Pete Prisco of CBS Sports. Prisco predicts an easy Bills win in Week 5.
This is a tough way for Steelers rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett to make his debut. The Bills do have injury issues on defense, but they still have a talented front that can make life miserable for Pickett. The Buffalo offense has slowed some the past two games, but this is a chance to get it going again. Look for Josh Allen to have a good day as the Bills spoil Pickett’s debut.
Pick: Bills 33, Steelers 17
Like Prisco, Vinnie Iyer of the Sporting News also goes in-depth on every one of his picks heading into Week 5 Sunday. Iyer sees a Bills win, but the Steelers keeping it close enough to cover.
The Steelers are turning to rookie Kenny Pickett for his first NFL start over former Bills backup QB Mitchell Trubisky. Look for Pickett to be competitive with his moxie and fearless passing against a banged-up secondary. The Bills will be fine grinding this game away with a more run-leaning attack and leave the backdoor open for the young passer opposite Allen.
Pick: Bills win 31-19 but fail to cover the spread.
These are just a few sites who make weekly NFL picks. When you think about all those sites not listed above, this is when we turn to our friends at NFL Pick Watch, a site dedicated to tracking NFL expert picks by the week. They take all expert picks and put them into an easy-to-read graph for fans to enjoy. When it comes to the Steelers vs. Bills game, a whopping 98% of NFL experts like the Bills straight up, but only 55% of the experts like the Bills to hold serve and cover the 14-point spread on Sunday.
ESPN was able to provide some interesting notes on the upcoming AFC game:
- Pittsburgh has not been at least a 14-point underdog since 1969. Pittsburgh is the only team since the 1970 AFL/NFL merger to never be at least a 14-point underdog. Pittsburgh’s largest underdog role since the merger is +13.5 against Dallas in Super Bowl XXX (which they lost by 10), and its largest underdog role under Mike Tomlin is 12 points in last year’s Wild Card Game against Kansas City.
- Since Mike Tomlin was hired in 2007, Pittsburgh is 44-25-3 ATS as an underdog, the second-best mark in the league in that span. They are 37-35 outright, the only team with a winning record in that span. Tomlin is 11-2 ATS (7-6 SU) as an underdog of at least 3.5 points when Ben Roethlisberger is not his quarterback, and he is 7-1 ATS without Big Ben as a least a six-point underdog.
- Josh Allen is 10-4-2 ATS as at least a seven-point favorite, and he is 6-2-2 ATS as double-digit favorite.
- Last season, first-round quarterbacks making their first career NFL starts went 0-5 ATS.
- This is the largest spread so far this season. The previous high was in Week 2 when Green Bay covered a 10.5-point spread against Chicago.
What do you think about the upcoming game? Will the experts have it right? Or are they way off? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below, and be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they prepare for the Bills in Week 5.