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The Raiders are headed east to play the Steelers, where they’ve had curious success in past years. After a convincing win against the Jets last week, the Raiders are 4-3 with sudden playoff aspirations.
In their first game since losing Le’Veon Bell with a season-ending injury, the Steelers are still listed as a 4.5-point favorites over the Raiders at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
While the Steelers struggled against the undefeated Bengals last week, there is a positive takeaway. Pittsburgh is 8-2 SU and 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 games after a loss the previous week. On top of that, the Raiders are 2-10 SU and ATS in their last 12 games after winning as underdogs the previous week.
Even with Le’Veon in the lineup, the Steelers were sure to struggle on the ground Sunday. The Raiders are the NFL’s 2nd-ranked rush defense at 82.9 yards per game, and held Chris Ivory to 17 yards on 15 carries last week.
Despite their struggles in recent seasons, the Raiders have been weirdly successful against the Steelers. The Raiders haven’t won more than four games in a season since 2011, but they are 4-1 in their last five games against Pittsburgh. In their last meeting in 2013, it was Terrelle Pryor who scored on a 93-yard touchdown run in route to a 21-18 Raiders win.
According to the OddsShark NFL database, all four of Pittsburgh’s losses this season have come at the hands of AFC opponents. But you can throw out a lot of Steelers stats this season, because Ben Roethlisberger missed four games with a knee injury. Ben is the straw the stirs the Steelers’ drink, and at 4-4 Pittsburgh is still as dangerous a team as anyone.
With two able quarterbacks and two struggling pass defenses, there could be a ton of points in this one. The point total for Sunday’s game is set at 48.5 at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. Sportsbooks apparent;y haven’t caught on to Derek Carr and the Raiders, because the point total has gone OVER in eight of their last ten games.
The OddsShark Computer is projecting a 23.3-21.1 Raiders victory, winning ATS outright but falling short on the point total.
Raiders vs. Steelers pick: Raiders ATS, Steelers SU