The Pittsburgh Steelers (1-1) travel to Allegiant Stadium for a week 3 matchup with the Las Vegas Raiders (1-1) on Sunday Night Football. It's the first road game of the season for the Black & Gold, and the first time the organization will play against the Raiders in Las Vegas.
Let's hope that the Raiders' Vegas home is luckier for the Steelers than the previous venues. Pittsburgh hasn't won a road game against the Silver & Black since 1995, suffering three losses by a field goal and another by a touchdown in that span, with all of those games being played in Oakland.
In recent years the Steelers have played well in their first road game of the season, winning their last three against the likes of Cincinnati, Buffalo, and the New York Giants. Under the guidance of Mike Tomlin (since 2007), Pittsburgh has posted an 8-7-1 mark in road openers. Three of those wins and the tie was at Cleveland.
Speaking of Cleveland, Pittsburgh used a two-touchdown performance by its defense to post a hard-fought, 26-22 victory over the visiting Browns (1-1) at Acrisure Stadium on Monday Night Football. It was the 21st consecutive win for the Steelers at home on MNF.
Steelers edge Alex Highsmith, who opened the scoring with a 30-yard interception return for a touchdown on the game's first play, forced a Deshaun Watson fumble and T.J. Watt returned it 16 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with just 6:58 remaining.
It's entirely possible that another strong defensive performance by the Steelers will be the catalyst for a win this week in Vegas. Like Pittsburgh, the Raiders have struggled offensively during their first two games, a 17-16 win at Denver and a 38-10 defeat at Buffalo. And despite a good chance that half of the stadium will be filled with Steelers fans, this is the Raiders' home opener, so you can be sure they'll come out fired up and ready to go.
The Raiders lead the all-time series 17-14, according to The Football Database. But the Steelers won a 13-10 matchup on a cold Christmas Eve in Pittsburgh last season. That was the game that Tomlin said, "We grew up tonight".
The jury is still out on that, but overall, these two teams match up well on paper. As mentioned, both have struggled offensively through the first two weeks. In addition, each team has won a close game and lost in a blowout. So, there's potential for a close game here.
Knowing this, let's dig a little deeper and discuss the three things you need to know about the Steelers' Week 3 primetime matchup with the Raiders.