Falcons Steelers Betting – Steelers Welcome Falcons In Home Opener Sunday
Two years removed from a Super Bowl title and times are tough in Pittsburgh where the Steelers are now looking up at a pair of teams in the AFC North that left them on the outside looking in when last year’s playoffs came around. The Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals are favored to keep Pittsburgh fans without playoff football again this year, and with the Steelers being forced to play the first four games of the season without franchise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, the oddsmakers may very well be justified in their projections. Matt Ryan and the Falcons watched from home as their NFC South rival, the New Orleans Saints captured the first Super Bowl in their 43-year history. Atlanta feels as though it has the talent and depth to challenge the Saints for the division title this year, a goal that begins this week with a tough road game against a quality opponent.
NFL Betting: Atlanta Falcons @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Online Sports Betting Odds: Falcons -2
Why To Bet On The Falcons?
The Falcons are betting on that continuity will be the key to returning to the postseason in 2010-11, as every one of last year’s starters except one returns for opening day. Atlanta is balanced on both sides of the ball, ranking in the top-11 on both offense and defense in the NFC, but there is definitely room for improvement. Quarterback Matt Ryan enters his third NFL season, and should be even better than the signal caller that led the Falcons passing game to the 14th best ranking in the league. Ryan’s numbers as a sophomore didn’t match his rookie season, but that was more because of an expanded playbook and a lingering toe injury that limited his mobility. With Michael Turned rumbling out of the backfield, and a defense that should be even more aggressive this year, the Falcons could be a contender.
Why To Bet On The Steelers?
The Steelers will play the first four games of the regular season without franchise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, but head coach Mike Tomlin has taken the necessary steps to making sure both Dennis Dixon and Byron Leftwich are ready to contribute. With Roethlisberger out, the Steelers will likely go back to their running ways of betting seasons’ past, which should be effective against a Falcons’ defense that finished 21st in the NFL. Pittsburgh boasts perhaps the best linebacker core in the NFL, and will need their front-seven to get major pressure on Ryan to mask a weakness in the secondary.
How The Game Will Play Out
Both teams will establish the run to set up the pass, but the hometown Steelers get the edge because their front seven should be able to shut down the rush which could force Atlanta into obvious passing situations. Whether the Falcons’ line can keep Ryan upright long enough to make the necessary plays will be the x-factor in whether Atlanta can steal the important football betting road win.
Falcons Steelers Betting Pick: Steelers