Steelers vs Bills Odds, Picks, Prediction
Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images. Pictured: Josh Allen.
- The Bills are massive favorites in Week 5 against the Steelers.
- The 14-point spread is the largest of the NFL season so far.
- Landon Silinsky breaks down the game and makes his pick below.
Steelers vs. Bills Odds
On the road against arguably the best team in the NFL, this is quite the spot for rookie Kenny Pickett to get his first career start.
The change for the Steelers was long overdue as Mitch Trubisky is simply not an NFL-caliber starter at this juncture of his career. Pickett, the 20th overall pick in this year's draft, was extremely productive in college, throwing for over 12,000 yards and 81 touchdowns in his five-year career with Pittsburgh, including a massive senior year in which he averaged 8.7 yards per attempt with 42 touchdowns. He finished third in the Heisman voting as well in 2021.
Buffalo is coming off an emotional win at Baltimore where they didn't lead until Tyler Bass hit the game-winning field goal as time expired.
Steelers vs. Bills Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how the Steelers and Bills match up statistically:
Steelers vs. Bills DVOA Breakdown
The Steelers are doing Pickett no favors by starting him in this game, as the Bills rank first in pass defense DVOA. Buffalo has allowed the fifth fewest yards per attempt (6.1) and the fewest total passing yards to opposing signal-callers.
In addition, it ranks ninth in QB pressure rating despite not blitzing often and have allowed just 14.5 points per game through four weeks, which ranks second in the NFL. Expect them to get to Pickett early and often.
Pickett came in on relief of Trubisky last week and completed 10-of-13 passes for 120 yards, however his three non-completions all went to the other team, as the Jets picked off the rookie on three occasions. That is not gonna fly against this nasty Bills D.
Pittsburgh would be wise to lean on the running game in this spot. However, Najee Harris has been really bad this season, sitting 37th among all running backs with 100 snaps played in yards per carry.
Harris' teammate, Jaylen Warren, has been far more effective, averaging 1.5 yards more per carry. It likely won't happen, but Mike Tomlin would be wise to mix in Warren more often .
As for the Steelers on the defensive side, it is not great. They sit 27th in QB pressure rating, which is not going to cut it against Josh Allen and this juggernaut Buffalo offense. The Steelers are also allowing the fourth most pass attempts in the NFL thus far.
Buffalo ranks third in points per game and currently have the highest implied team total on the Week 5 slate at 30.5. T.J. Watt's absence really hurts what the Steelers are able to do on the defensive side, and even with the injuries to their receiving corps, the Bills should still be able to find success.
Tight end Dawson Knox (hamstring) has already been ruled out alongside wideouts Jamison Crowder (ankle) and Jake Kumerow (ankle), while Isaiah McKenzie remains in concussion protocol. Thankfully for Buffalo, Gabe Davis is off the injury report and will be ready to rock, and I'd expect him to be quite busy with the Steelers likely to double Stefon Diggs.
The Bills should be able to hit their team total relatively easy here, and there could also be quite a bit of garbage time.
I expect Pickett to make plenty of mistakes in this game, leading to short fields for Buffalo, but the rookie does have plenty of weapons to work with and there can potentially be splash plays from the Pittsburgh offense in this spot, especially if the game gets out of hand and Buffalo backs off a bit.
Laying 14 points in the NFL is always tough to do no matter how good the favorite is, so a nice way to hedge is to take over 46.5 total points and hope the Steelers score in garbage time.
FanDuel Quickslip: Over 45.5 | Bet to 47