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Pittsburgh Steelers @ Tennessee Titans – Preview Predictions & Fantasy advice, game kicks off at 5pm on Sunday evening.
Someone’s ‘O’ is gonna go. The Sunday slate of games for Week 7 kicks off in style on Sky as 2 undefeated sides go head to head. The clash of Tennessee’s high-powered run game led by “King” Derrick Henry and the rock-solid Pittsburgh run defense in a game within a game in itself. If either team can get the upper hand in that battle, they will feel very optimistic about coming away with their unblemished record intact. Elsewhere both teams are in the top 5 in the league in turnover differential, with the Steelers at 4th and the Titans topping the league outright. Expect an extremely physical affair and neither side will be too willing to concede any ground to the other in that respect.
Money line: Steelers EVNS Titans 5/6
Points Spread: Titans -1.5
The best value I can find are the HT/FT bets with PIT/TEN at 7/1 and TEN/PIT at 15/2. Other odds that stoked my interest are 11/2 for Henry to get a TD in each half and 6/1 for both Jonnu Smith and Chase Claypool to score TD’s.
The Steelers defense is ranked 4th in fantasy so far this year but, as already mentioned, they face the toughest game they have had yet in the Titans offense. Not only is Henry a threat but they balance it out with a very competent pass game, especially when they can count on play action. But the 8 interceptions they have amassed is tied for 2nd in the NFL. I’d be cautiously optimistic about the Steelers D here, albeit being mindful of the fear that Henry could wreak havoc.
On offense, the story of the early part of the season for the Steelers has been the emergence of Chase Claypool as a big playmaker. He has formed a great partnership with Juju Smith-Schuster and against the Titans secondary, who while being 2nd in Points allowed per game also rank 28th in passing yards allowed, could be up for continuing the good form, which also helps Big Ben’s value too.
James Conner is someone I have a hard time putting my faith in, and I just can’t honestly put my finger on why, it may just be sheer stubbornness at this point. As much as I’d love to tell you he will put up big numbers, I can never quite convince myself of it first. Conner fans will tell you he has already racked up 2 20+ points weeks this year and generally scores overall. So, take that for what it’s worth.
Can Derrick henry continue his path of destruction against a ferocious Steeler front 7? The result of this won’t only affect his and the Steelers defense fantasy production but could also carry significant ramifications on the rest of the Titans offense who operate at their best when Henry is in full flow and they can work a heavy dose of play action into the game plan.
But Tannehill is playing with a confidence that wasn’t seen enough up until now in his career and the game winning drive last week shows he has the capability of producing without having to rely on Henry to set the table for him. Can he do it against a defense the calibre of Pittsburgh though? Consider it a gamble.
His weapons are well known at this stage, AJ Brown carries the big play threat, and has rebounded from a slow start to the season, hampered by injury, with 2 solid weeks. Corey Davis is back in the line-up after missing 2 games. Him and Adam Humphries could be looked at as a flex option if you are in need of one.
Tight End Jonnu Smith has become a big part of the Titans arsenal and his athleticism could be a key factor to breaking down the Steeler defense. His no.2 Anthony Firkser has emerged as a reliable target for Tannehill and don’t be surprised if he soon starts contributing more, especially in goal line situations, and become somewhat fantasy relevant.
These are both teams I have underestimated until now and I am very surprised that at week 7 this is game features 2 unbeaten sides. I probably have more faith in the Steelers defense making enough big plays to squeeze out a win here, but I expect this to go down to the wire. Probably not going to be a shootout by any stretch of the imagination, but definitely a game to watch if you’re a fan of tough, physical football.
Steelers by 3