NFL Betting – Pittsburgh Steelers 2021 Season Win Total

Written by:
Phil Simon
Published on:

The Ben Roethlisberger era is coming to an end, but it isn’t there yet. Big Ben took a pay cut to return, and while the offense isn’t going to be as powerful as it once was it should still be good enough to keep the Pittsburgh Steelers near the top of the AFC North. The Steelers cashed the OVER on their 9.5 win total last season winning their first 11 games and claiming another division title with a 12-4 record. There have been a number of changes this offseason and oddsmakers aren’t so high on a team that’s never had a losing record under Mike Tomlin, posting Pittsburgh’s total at 8.5. The biggest changes were on the offensive line and in the secondary. Even if the Steelers shore up those areas another double-digit win season will be tough.

Pittsburgh Steelers Win Total Odds

Over 8.5 Wins +118
Under 8.5 Wins -134

2021 Pittsburgh Steelers Offense Preview

All eyes will be on Roethlisberger and how he responds as he enters his 18th season in the league. We’ve seen several quarterbacks play at a high level at an advanced age and Big Ben is added to the list. Despite having a group of talented receivers, Roethlisberger threw for 3,803 yards, his lowest total in a full season since 2012. The top three receivers from a season ago are back giving Big Ben a level of comfort. JuJu Smith-Schuster led the team with 97 grabs with Diontae Johnson hauling in a team-best 923 receiving yards on 88 catches.

The passing game was good and it had to be since the Steelers had the worst ground game in the NFL. The hope is that top draft pick Najee Harris can take some of the pressure of Roethlisberger and ignite the feeble attack that averaged just over 84 yards per game in 2020. Part of that can be blamed on an offensive line that played at a sub-standard level last season.

Just a few seasons ago the line was touted as the best in football helping the Steelers rank among the top-5 in total yards four times in five seasons. They also placed among the top-10 in scoring in each of those years. The new group will have to protect its aging quarterback while also doing more in the run game. They were 24th in yards per game in 2020 but they averaged 26 points, which was plenty for the strong defense.

2021 Pittsburgh Steelers Defense Preview

And speaking of the defense it should again be a formidable group with their entire line returning. Last season the Steelers placed third in the NFL in yards and points allowed per game. However, the unit faltered down the stretch giving up at least 23 points in each of the last five regular season games going 1-4 in that stretch. They were then riddled by the Browns 48-37 in the Wild Card playoff game.

Now it’s hard to say why the defense struggled at the end of the year. They did face some good teams in Buffalo, Indy and Cleveland, but they also lost to Cincinnati and Washington, the latter ending Pittsburgh’s 11-game winning streak. There were also COVID pauses and breakouts that didn’t help and that will hopefully not be an issue.

One key piece of the unit took his services elsewhere leaving a hole in the second level. Bud Dupree signed a lucrative deal elsewhere giving an opportunity to Alex Highsmith and free agent Melvin Ingram. Still, with T.J. Watt, Cam Heyward and Stephon Tuitt in the mix the Steelers will keep opponents in check. The secondary took a hit with the departures of Steven Nelson and Mike Hilton.

2021 Pittsburgh Steelers Schedule Analysis

The Steelers got a first-hand look at the emergence of the Cleveland Browns last season losing consecutive games, including a 48-37 setback in the playoffs. And the AFC North should again be a dogfight after the top three teams each won at least 11 games in 2020. And the Bengals are hoping for a full season out of Joe Burrow, who showed promise before a devastating knee injury ended his campaign. And outside of their division they have games against the top clubs in the AFC playing at Buffalo to open the season and at Kansas City.

Based on last year’s performance the Steelers have the most difficult schedule in the NFL. They do have the benefit of an additional home game thanks to the revised schedule and that’s what could push them over the top on this futures bet.

Bet Pittsburgh Steelers Win Total at BookMaker.eu

I was surprised that the win total was 8.5 which seems low considering the Steelers won 12 times last year and have at least nine wins in six of the last seven seasons. The key is obviously Roethlisberger since there is no Plan B. We saw the offense struggle two years ago when Big Ben was shelved and Mason Rudolph couldn’t do the job. As of now Rudolph is still No. 2 on the depth chart, so Ben better stay healthy. With a solid defense and playmakers on offense I can’t see Pittsburgh finishing below .500.

NFL Odds: Pittsburgh Steelers OVER 8.5 Wins

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- Phil Simon, Gambling911.com

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