The Pittsburgh Steelers will look to snap their brutal three-game losing streak in Week 16, hosting the Cincinnati Bengals for yet another special edition Saturday NFL game slate. The game will kick off Saturday, December 23 at 4:30 p.m. ET from Acrisure Stadium in the Burgh.
If you’re looking to get in on the action for Week 16, here are three Steelers-Bengals player prop lines we like, courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
Mason Rudolph OVER 190.5 passing yards (-110)
It’s been a long time since Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph has started an NFL game. In fact, it’s been 768 days since his last start, but even despite some likely rust and the Steelers’ struggles on offense, the Bengals defense provides us several reasons to believe Rudolph can smash the over on his passing yard total in this game.
Entering Week 16, they’ll be without two key contributors on defense, including top cornerback Cam Taylor-Britt and defensive tackle D.J. Reader. In their four games without Taylor-Britt, specifically, the Bengals have allowed 1,198 passing yards (2nd-most), 26 passing plays of 15+ yards (4th-most), 7.88 yards per pass attempt (5th-most) while achieving the third-lowest pressure rate, per PFF.
Also, not that it counts for quite as much given how long it’s been since he’s played a full game, Rudolph has exceeded this passing total in each of the games he’s started and finished dating back to Week 8 of the 2019 season.
Diontae Johnson OVER 44.5 receiving yards (-110)
A lot has changed in the Steelers offense since Mason Rudolph last started a game. One of the few things that hasn’t changed is the integral role Diontae Johnson plays for the team. That was true back in the day with Rudolph under center as well, as Johnson has averaged 8.5 targets per game from Mason Rudolph across his various starts.
Johnson has exceeded this receiving total in all but three games this season and gets a Bengals defense that, as noted above, has been giving up plenty of explosive plays in the passing game. The Bengals have ranked sixth in the league allowing just over 170 yards per game to opposing wideouts all season.
Tyler Boyd OVER 33.5 receiving yards (-105)
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd has most of his season in the foreground while Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins (when healthy) have stolen the show. However, Week 16 should provide Boyd with an opportunity for both an uptick in target share in the absence of Chase, ruled out with a shoulder injury, as Boyd has been Browning’s second most-targeted receiver this season (only behind Chase).
Though Browning has targeted Boyd frequently, they haven’t been the most efficient QB-WR pairing, connecting on just 57.1% of those targets to average 6.5 yards per attempt. The Pittsburgh Steelers could be the perfect cure for that, dealing with a number of injuries at safety and inside linebacker that have led to some struggles covering the slot. Since Week 10, the Steelers have allowed 486 yards (10th-most), 5 touchdowns (tied for the most) and 0 interceptions on targets to the slot. 79% of Boyd’s targets have come in the slot this season, and he could play an even greater role now with the absence of Chase, who ranks second on the team with 45 slot targets this season.
Patrick Peterson OVER 2.5 tackles + assists (-166)
While the Steelers continue to seek answers at the safety position amid recent injuries and a suspension for Damontae Kazee (hint: there are none), they’ll look to Patrick Peterson to fill the void. After playing a career-high 30 snaps at free safety in Week 15 following the ejection of Kazee, they’ll look for a repeat performance from Peterson covering the middle, which should put him in position to rack up tackles and assists in an area of the field the Bengals will likely target heavily given the Steelers’ lack of personnel to cover.