Steelers vs. Ravens Week 17 matchup preview and current betting lines
The Pittsburgh Steelers (7-8) will try to keep their very slim playoff hopes alive with a win over the Baltimore Ravens (10-5), who are in the playoffs but need a win to keep pace with the Bengals before their Week 18 showdown. The Ravens can complete their first sweep of the Steelers since 2019.
But for the sixth time in eight meetings since 2019, we have a Steelers-Ravens game with one of the starting quarterbacks missing. Lamar Jackson will miss another game, putting Tyler Huntley in line for a fourth-straight start.
Like Huntley, Kenny Pickett was knocked out of the Week 14 meeting with a concussion. The Ravens won 16-14 thanks to intercepting backup Mitch Trubisky three times in Baltimore territory. Trubisky otherwise played well, but three turnovers are too many to overcome. The Ravens do not have any other interceptions in their last five games except for the ones Mitch threw them.
The Steelers’ 18-year streak of non-losing seasons is also on the line as that streak ends with a loss here. The NFL Week 17 odds have the Ravens as a 2-point home favorite with a total of 35 points.
Players to watch in the Steelers vs. Ravens game
Diontae Johnson: You may have heard by now that Diontae Johnson has the most targets (130), catches (82), and receiving yards (809) without a receiving touchdown. That would be the most targets without a touchdown since 1992, the first year we have data for that stat. The catches are the most for a wide receiver without a touchdown in NFL history, and only bested by running back James Wilder (85 in 1984). The 809 yards are the fourth most without a touchdown, and Al Toon (963) holds that record for the 1991 Jets. We’ll see if Johnson can snap it in the final two games, and nothing would be better for the Steelers than for him to score in Baltimore.
J.K. Dobbins: Like Lamar Jackson, Dobbins has missed most of his career games against the Steelers. But unlike Lamar, Dobbins has been incredible when he faces the Steelers. He had 113 yards in 2020 and 120 yards and a touchdown in Week 14. With the Ravens having so little going for them in the passing game now, it has to be Dobbins and the ground game to lead the way again.
Our Best NFL Bets for the Steelers vs. Ravens game
We have two NFL Week 17 predictions for this heated rivalry in the AFC North.
Steelers vs. Ravens Point Spread Pick: Steelers +2 (-110)
The Steelers vs. Ravens spread opened with the Ravens as a 6.5-point favorite before moving heavily in Pittsburgh’s direction after the news on Jackson was still not good.
Basically, it comes down to turnovers and stopping the run. Trubisky’s three picks were a killer in Week 14, but he moved the ball well on this defense. Pickett has done a great job of avoiding interceptions since the bye week, so look for an emphasis on that here as the Steelers hope to avoid a repeat of Week 14.
But the defense is the bigger wild card. Pittsburgh was dominated on the ground in Week 14, allowing a season-high 215 yards, almost 50 more yards than any other game this season. They seemed to take that loss to heart as the Steelers went down to Carolina and held the Panthers to 21 rushing yards. That’s a Carolina offense that rushed for 223 and 320 yards before and after the Steelers owned them.
Then the Steelers faced the Raiders last week and Josh Jacobs, the leading rusher in the NFL. They held Jacobs to 44 yards on 15 carries and shut him down while intercepting Derek Carr three times to lead to his benching.
Pittsburgh’s defense is not elite like in past years, but it can still hold the score down against a team with a limited passing attack. The Steelers intercepted Huntley twice in Baltimore last year in an overtime win. Despite allowing those 215 rushing yards in Week 14, the Steelers only allowed 16 points. The Ravens have scored more than 17 points just once in the six games out of the bye week.
The upset special is definitely in play as these teams often play low-scoring, close games that could go either way, and splitting is not uncommon with Mike Tomlin and John Harbaugh being neck and neck in wins and losses against each other since 2008.
The Ravens still ultimately have more to play for this season, but I like the Steelers here to cover for your NFL bet of the week.
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Steelers Prop: George Pickens Over 36.5 Receiving Yards (-120)
Does George Pickens love the island games at night? He made that incredible one-handed catch against the Browns in Week 3 that really put the rookie on the map. He had 61 yards and his first NFL touchdown in Miami on a Sunday night. He had 57 yards and a two-point conversion against the Colts in a win on a Monday night.
Then he caught a 14-yard game-winning touchdown against the Raiders in the final minute last week as part of a game with 57 yards. The weather shouldn’t be as cold this week, so the Steelers may want to throw the ball around more.
Pickens had three catches for 78 yards against the Ravens in Week 14. That was with Trubisky at quarterback, but we know Pickens and Pickett have a better connection this year as rookies who worked together in camp often. The Ravens still have their issues at times with defending wide receivers, so the low over on Pickens looks too good to pass up here.bet on NFL with betmgm
Frequently asked questions about the Steelers vs. Ravens game in Week 17
The game is being played at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland.
Meeting each other since 2008, Mike Tomlin’s Steelers are 17-15 against John Harbaugh’s Ravens, including playoff meetings. The Steelers had won four in a row prior to Baltimore’s 16-14 win in Week 14.
Pittsburgh is 8-6-1 ATS this season, the seventh-best record in the league. The Ravens are 6-8-1 ATS, a below-average record after they have struggled to hold some double-digit leads this year.