Game Predictions & Player Projections - KC vs. PIT

David Dorey, @DMDorey

Prediction: KC 20, PIT 27 (Line: PIT by 5.5, O/U = 47.5)

UPDATE: Eli Rogers was removed from the projections and remains out with a toe injury. Jamaal Charles is listed as questionable and was limited in all practices. He is expected to make his season debut this week but should be limited in his first game back. That makes all of the KC backs a risk though Ware should remain the primary this week. If only this week.

This will be a good game to watch. Le'Veon Bell is back and the 2-1 Steelers will be looking to make amends for that shocking beatdown the Eagles handed them. The 2-1 Chiefs look to gain their first road win in the wrong place.

The Chiefs won 23-13 when the Steelers visited in Week 7 last year.

Kansas City Chiefs

1 SD 33-27 10 @CAR ---
2 @HOU 12-19 11 TB ---
3 NYJ 24-3 12 @DEN ---
4 @PIT --- 13 @ATL ---
5 BYE --- 14 OAK ---
6 @OAK --- 15 TEN ---
7 NO --- 16 DEN ---
8 @IND --- 17 @SD ---
9 JAC ---      
News | Statistics | Roster
vs Rush Catch Pass
RB Spencer Ware 50,1 4-50
WR Chris Conley 3-40
TE Travis Kelce 7-70

Pregame Notes: The Chiefs continue to play differently when they leave home but at least after this matchup, there are only road trips to Oakland and Indianapolis over the next four games. There is a chance that Jamaal Charles could be back. In the end, this season will be defined by the two matchups against the Broncos and those won't start until Week 12. The Chiefs defense has been good but less so away from home.

QUARTERBACK : Alex Smith blew up in Week 1 when the Chargers visited and only brought along an offense. But he's back to the game manager-style production with just one passing score over the last two weeks and never more than 237 yards. His only week without any score was the previous away game.

RUNNING BACK : While HC Andy Reid suggested there is a chance that Jamaal Charles makes his debut this week, most expect him to take another week off. That makes some sense since the bye in Week 5 means he could get a full five weeks of the season to further recuperate from his knee injury. Spencer Ware is likely to take his fourth start and he's cooled significantly from the season opener thanks to facing two stout rush defenses. I'll assume Ware starts and Charles sits but update as needed.

WIDE RECEIVER : This is back to 2014 level production though Jeremy Maclin has scored once - in the opener of course. He was held to only 35 yards on four catches by the Jets but is the only wideout with any fantasy value here. Maclin's best game has been the 68 yards on six catches he made in the only road venue.

TIGHT END : Travis Kelce turned in a solid six catch, 89 yard effort in New York and scored for the first time this year. He was held to a season low 34 yards in the road trip to Houston. This is a chance to show he can matter away from Arrowhead.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Steelers have not allowed more than 79 yards to any runner but gave up three scores to rushers and two monster games to running backs as receivers - Gio Bernard (9-100, TD) and Darren Sproles (6-128, TD). That makes Ware very interesting this week since he already totaled 129 yards on seven catches in the opener.

Smith is never going to merit a fantasy start though he should have some decent yardage. No quarterback has failed to throw for at least 3001 yards on the Steelers though none have managed more than one score in Pittsburgh. Maclin deserves a start this week but should end up with just moderate yardage and catches.

Gaining Fantasy Points KC 19 15 29 6 9 3
Preventing Fantasy Points PIT 15 29 9 19 30 13

Pittsburgh Steelers

1 @WAS 38-16 10 DAL ---
2 CIN 24-16 11 @CLE ---
3 @PHI 3-34 12 @IND ---
4 KC --- 13 NYG ---
5 NYJ --- 14 @BUF ---
6 @MIA --- 15 @CIN ---
7 NE --- 16 BAL ---
8 BYE --- 17 CLE ---
9 @BAL ---      
News | Statistics | Roster
PIT vs KC Rush Catch Pass
QB Ben Roethlisberger 280,2
RB Le'Veon Bell 100,1 5-40,1
WR Antonio Brown 7-110,1
TE Jesse James 3-20
TE Vance McDonald 2-30
PK Chris Boswell 2 FG 3 XP

Pregame Notes: The Steelers were surprisingly bad last week when the Eagles decimated them and even Ben Roethlisberger was held to a season low yardage and no scores. But the passing offense had been outstanding in the first two weeks and now Le'veon Bell returns to offer up not only rushing but receiving help. The Steelers weathered the non-Bell weeks with a 2-1 record.

QUARTERBACK : Ben Roethlisberger was held to only 257 yards and no scores by the Eagles and he's thrown at least one interception every week. But he recorded high yardage and three scores in each of the first two home games including 259 yards versus the visiting Bengals. Roethlisberger hasn't used DeAngelo Williams much as a receiver but that should change with the addition of Le'Veon Bell back into the fold.

RUNNING BACK : The plan is to bring back Le'Veon Bell with a vengeance. No matter that he's sat on the couch and played video games for the last three weeks, Bell will come back to three home games over the next four weeks. By all accounts he's completely healed and ready to rock. DeAngelo Williams once again did a credible job as an replacement but now just becomes the breather should Bell want to leave the field.

WIDE RECEIVER : Eli Rogers injured his toe last week and could not finish the game. Rogers has been a nonfactor since his promising season opener and Sammie Coates has been marginally better with around 50 yards per week. Antonio Brown hasn't scored since that opener but comes off a 12 catch, 140 yard effort in the loss to the Eagles. Brown continues to be the only fantasy option in this crew.

TIGHT END : Jesse James did score in the only home game this year but has yet to top 31 yards in any week. He's just another tight end with no real fantasy relevance.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: This is a home game and the return of Le'Veon Bell who will be extra motivated to start well. The Chiefs have been very good against the pass but their only road game was versus Brock Osweiler who had 268 yards and one score. This is not likely a monster game by Roethlisberger but should post at least moderate to good yardage with a shot at one or two scores at the least.

Bell is an obvious starter and this has the feel of a big game for him. The Chiefs already allowed Melvin Gordon to score twice on them. Expect at least a good season debut for Bell and a chance of a really big performance. Martavis Bryant remains gone but otherwise the band is all back together.

Gaining Fantasy Points PIT 11 18 10 17 24 30
Preventing Fantasy Points KC 2 23 10 3 21 16

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