When the Pittsburgh Steelers walk onto the Arrowhead Stadium turf Sunday, there are many who think the 4-2 Steelers will walk over the Kansas City Chiefs. If Ben Roethlisberger plays, it certainly could be the case with the Steelers' offense finally getting healthy, but all signs point to Landry Jones getting his first NFL start of his career.
The Chiefs defense is no slouch, but whether they can match the dymanic play makers of Le'Veon Bell, Antonio Brown and Martavis Bryant, even with Jones at quarterback, will certainly be difficult. On the other side of the coin, the Steelers will have to try and stymie a Chiefs' offense which has struggled to protect Alex Smith. Smith has been sacked 23 times in the 2015 season, and the Steelers' pass rush could certainly have a field day with the Kansas City offensive line.
The Chiefs won't have Jamaal Charles at their disposal for the duration of the 2015 season, but they should have their best wide receiver, Jeremy Maclin, back on the field after suffering a concussion in the team's Week 6 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.
With the news of Roethlisberger being listed as 'questionable' for the game, the odds on the game have changed dramatically. The Steelers went from 2-point favorites, to 3-point underdogs as of Saturday. Quite the swing for a 4-2 team, but it shows a lack of trust in an untested and unproven quarterback in a league driven by quarterbacks.
The Steelers offense, even with Jones, is dynamic enough to move the football down the field, but red-zone efficiency will again be a story line following this Week 7 matchup. If the Steelers can't get into the endzone, they finally seem to have found a reliable option at kicker in Chris Boswell, who was named the AFC Special team player of the week last week after making 4 field goals in the team's win over the Arizona Cardinals.
Defensively, if the Steelers can pressure Smith the way they have Philip Rivers and Carson Palmer the past two weeks, it could be a long day for the Chiefs' offense. However, when facing lesser opponents, stranger things have happened than the Chiefs hanging around and finding a way to win.
So, who will win this game? We want to know your prediction. Simply enter your score into the tool below. All scores will be calculated, tabulated and averaged to see which fan base is closer to the actual score. Time for BTSC to show they are smarter than the Chiefs fans at Arrowhead Pride (SB Nation's Chiefs website).
As for us here at BTSC, this is a game the Steelers have to win, and a perfect opportunity for Mike Tomlin and company to put the "playing down" discussion to bed. The Steelers are rolling, and they keep it going with a win over the Chiefs in Week 7.
Jeff Hartman's (BTSC Editor) prediction: