Still Curtain writer, Edward Hunt, predicts the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2018 regular season outcome.
The Steelers look to have another playoff caliber team going into 2018. They will get Le’Veon Bell back at the beginning of the season and they still have Ben Roethlisberger as their franchise quarterback. Their offense should be their strength and their defense should be at the level it was last year. They also should be extending kicker Chris Boswell to solidify the special teams department. Lets take a look at each game and then predict what their record will be.
Week One: at Cleveland
The Steelers will begin the season against the Cleveland Browns and the Browns haven’t won in years. The Steelers may be a bit sluggish in the beginning of the season, but they should be able to take care of business. I am predicting a win here.
Week Two: vs Kansas City
The Steelers usually play Kansas City tough and they have won over the past four years. Remember, Kansas City was an undefeated team until they came into Pittsburgh. I am projecting another win here.
Week Three: at Tampa Bay
The Steelers should be favored in this game as this will be the easiest of the NFC games. I think the Steelers will pull out a win in Tampa, but I think this game will be closer than Steeler fans would like. This is a Monday night game; so, both teams will be amped up.
Week Four: vs Baltimore
The Steelers should get off to a good start with their schedule but will face their first big test on Sunday Night Football. This game should be a nail-biter as this is one of the better rivalries in Football. I give Baltimore the edge in this one.
Week Five: vs Atlanta
Matt Ryan will come into Pittsburgh with a brand new contract and will need to play his best ball to beat the Steelers. These are two teams that are full of talent, but I think the home field advantage is the difference in this one. The Steelers will move to 4-1 with this win.
Week Six: at Cincinnati
This game will be a bloodbath. We know that for sure. With the new leading with the helmet rule, this may curb the injuries in this game. I think the Steelers beat the Bengals in a violent showdown.
Week Eight: vs Cleveland
The Browns will come into town and the Steelers will be coming off a bye. The Steelers have won these head to head games in recent years and so you have to think they will sweep their division foe, the Browns.
Week Nine: vs Baltimore
The Steelers will then host the Ravens for the second round of their two-round bout. The Steelers will be sitting at the top of the division at 6-1 and may not have the fire that the Ravens have. I have the Ravens winning this one in another battle to the last possession.
Week Ten: vs Carolina
This matchup will be the Thursday night game of the week and it will be after playing their division rival, the Baltimore Ravens. Surely, this is two tough games, back-to-back and so I think the Steelers go into a mini-skid and drop to 6-3.
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Week Eleven: at Jacksonville
The Steelers will come into Jacksonville pretty mad about the last time the two played. The Steelers will come into Jacksonville ready for revenge and will take a tough one in Jacksonville. This will be a prime time game.
Week Twelve: at Denver
The Steelers have had some trouble with Denver over the years, but will not have to face Peyton Manning. They also may not be happy about their elimination from the playoffs from Tim Tebow. I see the Steelers coming out with the win with the quarterback play of Ben Roethlisberger over Case Keenum being the difference.
Week Thirteen: vs Los Angeles Chargers
The Steelers will host the Chargers and this game should be one of the Steelers better ones. The Steelers know how to win in December and at home. I have the Steelers winning and moving to 9-3.
Week Fourteen: at Oakland
This will be a Sunday night game and it will feature two historic teams. The Steelers are old rivals with the Raiders and I think will get the best of Oakland. I have the Steelers winning in probably the last time they play in Oakland.
Week Fifteen: vs New England
This is a rematch from last year where the Steelers were robbed of Jesse James reception to most likely win that week fifteen game as well. Until the Steelers beat the Patriots, I will pick the Patriots to beat the Steelers. The Steelers will be in the playoff hunt still at 10-4.
Week Sixteen: at New Orleans
The Steelers will come into New Orleans and will have a tough matchup against the Saints. I see this as being the type of game that comes down to whoever has the ball last wins. I have the Steelers edging out the Saints in a close one.
Week Seventeen: vs Cincinnati
The Steelers will probably be in the playoffs at this point but will be fighting for a better seed. They won’t like having to play the physical Bengals to close out the season. The Steelers will come out ahead as the home favorites to beat the Bengals.
Overall, I see the Steelers making the playoffs and going 12-4 in the regular season. This is such a hard thing to predict as there are so many twists and turns to an NFL season, but that is why we watch football.