Week 15: Steelers @ Colts (Date and Time TBD)
The Indianapolis Colts might be the most improved NFL team in just one year's time. Not only do they have a new coaching staff that's eager to get make changes and get to work, but they crushed it in the 2023 NFL Draft.
With 12 total picks, they were able to load up on talent across the board -- including adding QB Anthony Richardson, CB Julius Brents, WR Josh Downs, OT Blake Freeland, and EDGE Adetomiwa Adebawore. Mike Tomlin is typically very good against rookie quarterbacks, but Richardson will be hard to contain. I also think the Colts are a more talented team than anyone is giving them credit for right now with talent on both sides of the ball.
Pittsburgh defeated Indianapolis last November when the Colts were in disarray, but I have them getting redemption on us this time around in a close contest. I think the Steelers will fall to a sneaky-talented Colts team in Week 15.
Prediction: Loss (9-5)
Week 16: Steelers vs Bengals, December 23rd, 4:30 p.m. ET (NBC)
Week 1 against the Cincinnati Bengals last season was an absolute slugfest. Ultimately, it was Pittsburgh who came out on top, but a repeat performance can't be expected. In order to secure the win, it took four Joe Burrow interceptions and a blocked field goal by Minkah Fitzpatrick to come away with the overtime victory.
The second time around, Cincy got up early on the Steelers, and Kenny Pickett was forced to play catchup. For obvious reasons, the Bengals are favorites to win the AFC North again in 2023, and while they have lost some talent on defense, their powerhouse offense has a chance to be even stronger this season now that they've upgraded the offensive line.
Even at home for this contest, it's hard to predict a Pittsburgh victory until they show that their defense can slow down elite quarterbacks. Burrow and the Bengals scored 57 points in two games against the Steelers last year. I've got Cincinnati winning this contest at Acrisure Stadium. It's only the second of three games played in the late-afternoon window on Sunday.