For the second straight week, the Pittsburgh Steelers are playing a team which they aren't extremely familiar with. After the Steelers dismantled the San Francisco 49ers 43-18 last Sunday at Heinz Field, they now travel to St. Louis to play the Rams in the Edward Jones Dome, and there are a lot of questions surrounding this game which make the outcome a bit blurry.
The Steelers have great news in the return of Le'Veon Bell from suspension to bolster an offense which is already considered to be one of the best in the league. Bell's return will be needed as the Rams deploy one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL, anchored by budding superstar Aaron Donald. The question in this game is, will the Steelers be able to duplicate the success the Washington Redskins had when they defeated the Rams in Week 2 by running the football? The combination of DeAngelo Williams and Bell will certainly make for an interesting combination heading into this Week 3 game.
As the Steelers got great news with No. 26 returning to their offensive lineup, they received some bad news with both Ryan Shazier and Daniel McCullers being ruled out for this game. Shazier is coming off a monster game against the 49ers where he registered 15 tackles, 2 sacks, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble. Unfortunately, a shoulder injury he suffered in the 4th quarter of the game has left him to watch on the sidelines as the defense looks to stop Nick Foles and company this Sunday.
There are a lot of unknowns in this matchup, and a lot of those surround the fact that the season is still in its infancy. The Steelers offense has moved the ball well the entire season, but will their red-zone efficiency and scoring mimic their performance against the New England Patriots, or the 49ers output a week ago? Will the defense give up a ridiculous amount of passing yards, or will the defensive front seven dominate the line of scrimmage as they did at Heinz Field against San Francisco?
As noted above, there are a lot of questions, which makes for a difficult pick. We want to know what your pick is by selecting the final score in the tool below. Simply put in your prediction, and all BTSC's predictions will be tabulated, calculated and compared to Turf Show Times (SB Nation's Rams website). Time for BTSC to prove they are the more intelligent fan base by correctly picking the score.
As for me, the Steelers offense is simply too prolific for the Rams defense, and although this will be a closer game than many think, the Steelers will come out victorious and head into a Week 4 grudge match against the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday Night Football with a 2-1 record.
Jeff Hartman's Prediction (BTSC Editor):