Cleveland, Ohio-Initially, Vegas believed that compared with the newly crowned AFC Northern Steelers, Brown should be favored by 6.5 points domestically in Week 17. Mike Tomlin did not say whether he will rest any starters, but this seems to be a fair course.
Everything changed on Tuesday afternoon. Tomlin announced that second-year quarterback Mason Rudolph will start the game, allowing 38-year-old Ben Roethlisberger to rest for the first full week since August. This change increased the Browns’ scoring from 6.5 to 1
Remember, the Steelers haven’t had a full week in the entire season. Pittsburgh’s initial goodbye was Week 8, but when the Titans broke out COVID-19, it forced the league to move Tennessee’s Week 4 game against the Steelers to Week 8.
It sounds simple on paper. But in fact, for the experienced team in Pittsburgh, this is the worst logistical situation. Think about it. The Steelers practiced all week to prepare for the Titans, only to find out after the game was postponed for a few days.
Basically, their goodbye week lasts two days instead of one week. Pittsburgh’s roster includes 10 players over the age of 30. Three starting offensive wingers (Alejandro Villanueva, David de Castro, Moricce Punch), cornerback Joe Hayden and defensive winger Cam Hayward Dedu can use rest like Big Ben, but it sounds like they will work.
However, if the situation changes, I won’t be surprised. For example, Tomlin said: “If there is a chance to airmail one or two players to the playoffs, we will.”
He continued to name only Roethlisberger, adding that most beginners would participate in the competition. Note that leaving the swing space. For example, TJ Watt playing the full game will not surprise me. He is 26 years old and competes with Aaron Donald for the Defensive Player of the Year.
However, it seems logical to sit on some older linesmen. We may not know Tomlin’s complete plan until Sunday. It’s unclear what the Steelers’ offense in Rudolph’s ph gun will look like.
Roethlisberger leads the league with 608 pass attempts. There are an average of 40 free throws per game. Is it a good idea for Tomlin to give Miles Garrett 40 chances to fire Rudolph? Probably not. However, in the last full game Rudolph started his throwing 44 times, losing the game 21-7 at FirstEnergy Stadium. He completed 53% of his passes and was intercepted four times.
Passing the ball to James Conner may not be the solution either. Despite the success of Conner’s career against Cleveland (including 100 yards in Week 6), the Steelers rank 28th in steals per game (84.3) and average sprints per game ( twenty three).
Pittsburgh’s contention is so bad that the 31st and 30th teams (Texas and Lions) average 7 yards more per game.
How will the Steelers’ offense try to improve the Browns’ defense? It’s not clear but considering the history between the two teams and the fact that this is the National Football League, Brown’s victory is not easy.
Beware of Brown’s bettors. It is not easy to cover the 10-point spread.
New Brown masks for sale: Here, you can buy adult and adolescent coronavirus protection masks with the theme of Cleveland Browns, including a single mask ($14.99) and 3 packs ($24.99). All NFL proceeds are donated to the CDC Foundation.
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