Editor’s note: The odds below are courtesy of Heavy’s partners at OddsShark. Click here for more odds and NFL betting info at OddsShark.
Brady and the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots are listed as 7-point home favorites against the Steelers at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. The quarterback’s court victory over the NFL last week in the Deflategate case led most oddsmakers to move their spread from 2.5 to three points for the game.
New England is 1-3 ATS in its last four September games according to the OddsShark NFL Database, but the Patriots are, in contrast, 13-1 SU in their last 14 regular season games as home favorites.
The Patriots will likely be potent offensively once again this season, and Brady has star tight end Rob Gronkowski to create mismatches in the passing game. Their largest question mark is having the likes of Malcolm Butler and Logan Ryan as the first options at cornerback after Darrelle Revis left via free agency.
The Patriots have a strong pass rush and their history of success shows they can win without an overwhelming defense.
Roethlisberger is coming off a 2014 season where he threw for a career-high 4,952 yards, helping Pittsburgh become one of the NFL’s most efficient passing teams. The Steelers come in without feature running back Le’Veon Bell and wide receiver Martavis Bryant, who are each serving NFL suspensions for substance abuse violations.
The Steelers’ supporting cast is also missing center Maurkice Pouncey, who is on the injured reserve list with a broken fibula until at least Week 9. However, Antonio Brown is the NFL’s most prolific wide receiver.
The Steelers are 7-2 ATS in their last nine games as underdogs during the regular season. They are also 5-2 SU in their last seven regular-season road games against AFC East teams.
The total for Thursday night’s Pittsburgh vs. New England betting matchup is set at 52 points at the sportsbooks, and the total has gone OVER in six of the AFC rivals’ last eight meetings.
The OddsShark Computer has projected a 29.8-23.7 New England victory. That suggests it is well within the realm of possibility that the Steelers will keep the game close on Thursday.