The Pittsburgh Steelers will go head-to-head with AFC North rival Cincinnati Bengals at 1 p.m. EDT at Heinz Field Sunday. The Bengals, although still referred to as the Bungles in most black and gold circles, have been anything but Bungles in the regular season. In fact, their play has been downright impressive leading up to the playoffs.
Last year the Bengals defeated the Steelers on their home turf, while the Steelers beat Cincinnati in their house twice, once being the heated game in the AFC Wild Card round of the Playoffs. Nonetheless, the bad blood hasn't gone away, and this game is guaranteed to be one to remember.
Will there be offensive fireworks? Will their be ejections? Time will tell, but this is about as tough as a pick to make. Most Steelers fans will side with their favorite team, but how do the experts think this game will pan out?
At CBSSports, they seem to be very pro-Pittsburgh in their expert picks. In fact, 6 of their 8 experts who make weekly selections think the Steelers will hold serve at home, and advance to 2-0. The same can be said about the expert panel at FOXSports. 5 of their 6 experts believe the Steelers are the team to beat in this AFC North grudge match.
Not to disappoint, the folks here at SB Nation give the Bengals the best chance to win, as 3 of their 9 experts like Cincinnati to upset the Steelers on their home turf, for the second year in a row. However, ESPN's large expert panel of 9 is almost all black and gold, except for one. Ron Jaworski thinks the Bengals will win the upcoming game in Week 2.
Thanks to our friends at NFL Pick Watch, a website which keeps track of all expert picks across the internet, they report 84-percent of experts who make weekly selections like the Steelers at home this Sunday. To give a little perspective here, the expert tally heading into Week 1 against the Washington Redskins had 76-percent of experts liking Pittsburgh in the season opener.
Say what you want about this rivalry, but the experts have spoken, and what they are speaking all sounds a lot like the Steelers are going to win this game. Time will tell if their prognostication skills are on point, but those who are in the know, seem to think the Steelers are the team to beat.