Game Predictions & Player Projections - PIT vs ATL

Game Predictions & Player Projections - PIT vs ATL


Game Predictions & Player Projections - PIT vs ATL

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Prediction: PIT 34, ATL 24 (Line: PIT by 2)

UPDATE: Julio Jones remains questionable and never practiced this week. I am lowering his projections and he may not play. He’s shaping up to be a game time decision and it is especially troubling that he wasn’t able to practice. Roddy White was limited this week but had a full day on Friday.

The 8-5 Steelers are just a half game back in the AFC North and are 4-3 in road games. The 5-8 Falcons are amazingly tied with the Saints for the NFC West that no one wants or deserves. Atlanta is only 3-3 at home. A healthy Julio Jones doesn’t ensure a win but a hobbled or missing Jones probably does equate to a loss.

Pittsburgh Steelers

1 CLE 30-27 10 @NYJ 13-20
2 @BAL 6-26 11 @TEN 27-24
3 @CAR 37-19 12 BYE —–
4 TB 24-27 13 NO 32-35
5 @JAC 17-9 14 @CIN 42-21
6 @CLE 10-31 15 @ATL —–
7 HOU 30-23 16 KC —–
8 IND 51-34 17 CIN —–
9 BAL 43-23  
News | Statistics | Roster
PIT @ ATL Rush Catch Pass
QB Ben Roethlisberger 320,3
RB Le’Veon Bell 100,1 6-50,1
WR Antonio Brown 8-130,1
WR Martavis Bryant 5-80,1
WR Markus Wheaton 4-40
TE Heath Miller 2-20
PK Shaun Suisham 2 FG 4 XP

Pregame Notes: The Steelers playoff hopes likely comes down to the season finale against the Bengals. This week is only tough by the venue and the Steelers have been inconsistent on the road. But the key to this week is that they are facing an exceptionally weak defense right when the passing and rushing efforts are at their peak. This is no gimmee but should be a Steelers win with plenty of fantasy points to share.

QUARTERBACK : Ben Roethlisberger was on a season long streak of single touchdown games when on the road and then rolling up big scores and yards at home. But last week he passed for 350 yards and three touchdowns in Cincinnati in a must win and should be primed for this final road game going against a bad defense and indoors no less.

RUNNING BACK : The one person who is still celebrating the departure of LeGarrette Blount is Le’veon Bell who has played lights out for the last three games while getting the full load. He’s scored five touchdowns and rolled up 484 rushing yards including 204 yards in Tennessee. He caught 24 passes for 227 yards as well – all in just three weeks when his owners needed him most. Bell went nine games without a rushing touchdown or more than 92 rush yards. Now he’s become the #1 fantasy back for the last three weeks.

WIDE RECEIVER : Antonio Brown maintains his torrid pace with ten scores and ten games with 90+ yards. Martavis Bryant scored six times in his first four games but then went quiet for two weeks. No more – he was back with 109 yards on four catches and one score in Cincinnati. Brown is a constant and Bryant shows up against weaker secondaries.

TIGHT END : Occasional touchdown by Heath Miller but never must yardage. No reliable fantasy value.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: There is no need drawing this out. The Falcons are one of the worst defenses in the league while the Steelers rank in the top five for the important positions. Expect big things from Roethlisberger, Brown, Bell and even Bryant is worth a flex sort of play this week against the #30 defense for wide receivers.

Gaining Fantasy Points PIT 5 5 4 16 9 18
Preventing Fantasy Points ATL 21 32 30 2 27 15

Atlanta Falcons

1 NO 37-34 10 @TB 27-17
2 @CIN 10-24 11 @CAR 19-17
3 TB 56-14 12 CLE 24-26
4 @MIN 28-41 13 ARI 29-18
5 @NYG 20-30 14 @GB 37-43
6 CHI 13-27 15 PIT —–
7 @BAL 7-29 16 @NO —–
8 DET 21-22 17 CAR —–
9 BYE —–  
News | Statistics | Roster
ATL vs PIT Rush Catch Pass
QB Matt Ryan 300,2
WR Julio Jones 4-50
WR Mohamed Sanu 5-60
TE Levine Toilolo 3-30
PK Matt Bryant 1 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The Falcons showed impressive determination when they fought the Packers to the end last Monday night but it did all feel a bit like the Packers had won and merely kept them at an arm’s distance the entire time. The Falcons are back at home where they have played better and they are tied for the lead in the division with the first tie breaker over the Saints. The season doesn’t revolve around this week, it matters next week in New Orleans. That won’t help the effort here.

QUARTERBACK : The Falcons offense has had problems this year but that has never been the fault of Matt Ryan who threw a score in every game and had multiple touchdowns in all but one home venue. His yardage remains high with half his games over 280 yards but the defense has never made it easy for him with field position and game situation.

RUNNING BACK : Steven Jackson has been better in recent weeks with scoring in four of the last six weeks but his yardage is almost always low and he has minimal use as a receiver. Jackson totals six touchdowns this year but never gets more than 16 carries or so even facing weaker defenses. Devonta Freeman has done nothing to suggest he is due for an upgrade in workload this year or any and Jacquizz Rodgers drains off another handful of touches each week without ever really contributing anything. I’ll project for Jackson but both Freeman and Rodgers will figure in to some measure.

WIDE RECEIVER : Julio Jones is another player who has really come on strongly in the final three weeks and he comes off a career best 11 catches for 259 yards and one score in Green Bay where they simply could not stop him. He had 189 yards on ten receptions with a score against the Cardinals the previous week. But Jones injured his hip and may not play here. His status will be updated later in the week and I will assume a hobbled Jones plays for now.

Roddy White came back from ankle surgery last week to catch is sixth touchdown on the year and he was on a five game string of productive games until last week. His ankle should be even better this week and Harry Douglas is no threat to steal catches.

TIGHT END : No fantasy value.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Steelers secondary is weak and not improving much despite the return of injured players. They allow multiple touchdowns to any decent quarterback along with higher yardage. Chances are the Steelers get a lead and the Falcons have to eventually abandon the run and just pass. The Steelers are weak versus tight ends but that does not apply here. Expect good stats from Ryan, White and Jones if he is healthy.

Gaining Fantasy Points ATL 8 6 2 31 11 21
Preventing Fantasy Points PIT 24 13 18 24 24 13

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