“Well, well, well how the turn tables.” – Michael Scott
With another bad game and an unexpected script I am officially below .500. Tajae Sharpe tweaked (reinjured?) an ankle in pregame warmups and saw the ball only once after drawing a critical 3rd down pass interference on the first drive of the game. On the Dallas side of the ball, Dak Prescott was unable to scramble against a seemingly rejuvenated Titans defensive line. Scared money doesn’t make money though and we will hope to get some more dependable action in a game with some more reliable offenses.
Tonight’s bets, as will my play on the total at 51, rely on two hot teams chasing scores against defenses that have pros and cons. We can only hope that these coaches understand that more than John Gruden and Jason Garrett in the last two installments.
Greg Olsen/Vance McDonald Total Receptions: Over 4.5/Over 3.5
A lot has been said about the lack of TE performance this season. This game screams for them to be used and there are two solid choices tonight. Olsen, looking fully healthy, faces a Steelers defense that is tied for the league lead in receptions allowed to TEs. McDonald has a slightly tougher path with more established WRs and Jesse James as a secondary TE. However, over the last six games, Carolina has allowed 6.5 receptions and almost 70 yards per game to opposing tight ends. Let’s show some love to the big bodies over the middle on a couple of overs tonight.
Juju Smith-Schuster Total Receiving Yards: Over 77.5
Juju, unlike the the last two slot receiver recommendations, is highly talented, highly targeted, and is a significant piece of his team’s offense. Over his last three games Smith-Schuster has averaged slightly below tonight’s total on 6 receptions per game. Tonight, in a higher scoring expected game he will face off most consistently with Captain Munnerlyn with a significant size advantage (6’1/215 vs 5’8/180). Lesser secondary/slot receivers have performed well in this matchup this season and Juju is a cut above most as far slot receivers go.
Ben Roethlisberger O1.5 TD Passes – Carolina has allowed multi-TD passing days in 7 straight, if this game is high scoring as expected Ben will be slinging it.
Christian McCaffrey O46.5 Receiving Yards – CMC might find tough sledding tonight against an improved Steelers front, but he has been matchup proof by getting the ball through the air.