New England Patriots (2-10) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5)
The struggling New England Patriots head to Acrisure Stadium to take on the playoff hopeful Pittsburgh Steelers for this Week 14 NFL Thursday Night Football matchup. With NFL betting picks favoring the Steelers by 6.5 points, can the Patriots overcome their woeful away record for the upset? Kickoff is scheduled for 8:15 PM ET on Thursday, December 7.
The Patriots’ offense has been dismal all season, ranking 30th with just 17 points per game. Rushing has been their lone bright spot behind Rhamondre Stevenson’s 580 yards. However, with quarterback Mac Jones struggling mightily, their lethargic passing attack spells trouble against Pittsburgh’s stout defense.
Conversely, the Steelers have found new life on offense since Kenny Pickett took over at quarterback. The emergence of rookie wideout George Pickens as an elite weapon with 662 receiving yards has further catalyzed their attack. Pittsburgh should dominate in the trenches against New England’s 27th ranked rushing defense allowing 139 yards per contest.
New England Patriots vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Game Info
|Thursday, December 7, 2023 at 8:15 PM ET
|NFL Game Pass
Mac Jones QB vs Kenny Pickett QB
In his sophomore campaign, Patriots quarterback Mac Jones has taken a clear step backward across every major statistical category. While he showed promise as a game manager in his rookie season, Jones has struggled mightily in 2022, posting just a 77 passer rating with 12 interceptions to 10 touchdowns. If New England has any shot at an upset, Jones must avoid turnovers while leading time-consuming drives.
In contrast, Steelers rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett seems to improve every week as he gets more comfortable guiding the offense. Since taking over the starting job full-time in Week 5, Pickett has posted a respectable 81.2 rating while showing nice mobility and playmaking ability, racking up five rushing scores. He could be poised for a big game against the Pats’ 27th-ranked pass defense.
NFL Odds/Point Spread: Pittsburgh Steelers -270, Total Odds: 35
The betting odds favor the Steelers, with a -270 moneyline compared to the Patriots’ +220. The point spread of 6.5 points indicates expectations of a relatively close game, though the Steelers are clearly the favorites. The total of 35 points, with both teams trending towards ‘UNDER’, suggests a defensively oriented game.
New England Patriots Betting Trends
The Patriots are an abysmal 0-5 straight up and against the spread over their last five outings. They have also gone under the total in nine of their previous 11 matchups. While New England has dominated this head-to-head rivalry of late with a 13-4-2 ATS record over the past 19 meetings, they have dropped seven straight on the road. Considering their awful recent form and Jones’ turnover issues, taking the points with the Pats seems ill-advised even given their stellar history versus Pittsburgh.
Pittsburgh Steelers Betting Trends
The Steelers have been solid for bettors this season with an 11-5 ATS record. They have also gone under the total in nine of their last 10 contests. At home, unders have hit in four of Pittsburgh’s previous five outings. Against New England specifically, six of the past seven head-to-head battles have gone under the total, including five straight played in Steel City. With two stout defenses and struggling passing attacks, the under 35 total points seems like an excellent wager.
New England Patriots vs. Pittsburgh Steelers 12/7/23 Betting Picks
The game’s dynamics suggest a tough outing for the Patriots. The Steelers’ balanced offense and sturdy defense, combined with the Patriots’ struggling offense, lean towards a Pittsburgh victory. However, the Patriots’ historical ATS success against Pittsburgh cannot be ignored, potentially making them a risky but valuable pick for the spread.
In the best betting websites may offer tempting odds for an underdog victory, but the safer bet would likely be on the Steelers to cover the spread. The low total points line also aligns with both teams’ recent trends towards low-scoring games, making the ‘UNDER’ a sensible choice for bettors.