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Green Bay Packers vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Expert Pick

Green Bay Packers vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Expert Pick

GREEN BAY PACKERS VS. PITTSBURGH STEELERS EXPERT PICK – The Pittsburgh Steelers (5-3) host the Green Bay Packers (3-5) in a matchup between two of the NFL’s most storied franchises.

The Packers ended their 4-game losing streak by beating the Los Angeles Rams 20-3 in their best performance of the season. The Steelers continued to find ways to win a 20-16 comeback victory over the Tennessee Titans. 

The Odds

Matchup

Open

Spread

Total

Moneyline

Green Bay Packers

(3-5 SU, 4-4 ATS)

+3.0

+3.0

O39

+145

Pittsburgh Steelers

(5-3 SU, 5-3 ATS)

O/U 38

-3.0

U39

-175

Kickoff

When: Sunday, November 12, 2023 at 1:00 PM ET

Where: Acrisure Stadium

TV: CBS

The Young and the Restless

Once upon a time the Steelers prided themselves for having a drama-free locker room. In what now seems like a lifetime ago, this team used to win playoff games and an occasional Super Bowl. The mantra back in this era from the owners, coaches and players was to keep everything “in-house” and leave the drama at the door. In the last decade, and recently with this group, they can’t seem to escape the soap opera-like atmosphere. It started with the histrionics surrounding coordinator Matt Canada’s lackluster offense. It has now manifested into much more.

Last week receiver George Pickens had two catches for a career-low minus- 1 yard against the Titans and was unable to get his second foot down for what could have been a touchdown in the third quarter. Instead of celebrating the victory, he was visibly upset and took to Instagram to express those frustrations, which he has now denied had anything to do with the Steelers. 

“All I can keep doing is just keep working to be honest,” Pickens said. “I can’t really express (frustration publicly) anymore, but I can just keep working. That’s it.”

Tomlin has experience with “diva” wide receivers having coached the much-maligned Antonio Brown for 12 seasons. Regarding Pickens recent drama Tomlin stated it’s a mere pebble in his shoe and would be handled, you guessed it…  “in-house.”

The stage was already set for some theatrics heading into the Titans game as longtime starting right tackle, Chuks Okorafor, was benched for disciplinary reasons. We have now come to find out that he was criticizing the play-calling of coordinator Matt Canada with Tomlin nearby hearing every word in their 20-10 loss. 

This team is winning by the narrowest of margins and can’t afford distractions if it expects to make the playoffs and possibly contend for a title.

Days of our Lives

The Steelers have found ways to win with an opportunistic defense keeping  games close and quarterback Kenny Pickett leading them to comeback victories. The NFL is all about winning and doesn’t award style points, which is a common “Tomlinism” heard frequently by the local media. This was expressed best during this week’s press conference when the coach was asked about his quarterback only having a 75 QB Ranking in the first three-quarters of the game.

“What is his rating in the fourth quarter?” Tomlin interrupted, prompting the reporter to answer 108. “Well, just ask it from that perspective. He’s awesome in the fourth quarter. Man, he rises up in those moments. He wants to be the reason why we’re successful. He prepares his tail off. In some instances when people run from challenges, he runs to challenges. So, that’s why his performance is so good in the fourth. Those other quarters we’ll work on.”

This chippy exchange highlighted a press conference in which Tomlin clearly was done talking about the drama surrounding his team.

The Bold and the Beautiful (The Difference Makers) 

The Packers are the youngest team in the NFL and have struggled on both sides of the ball for most of the season. They showed signs of life last week against the Rams posting season highs in yards rushing (184), total yards (391) and time of possession. Running back Aaron Jones looks to piggyback from this performance which would open the entire offense. Quarterback Jordan Love will look to feed his talented rookie receiver Jayden Reed who has impressed the Steelers coaching staff.

“Really like the young slot out of Michigan State,” said Tomlin about Reed. “I thought he was the most complete interior or slot receiver in this past draft.”

The Steelers’ ground game opened for them last week as well rushing for a season-high 166 yards on 30 carries. While Najee Harris is technically the starting running back, it’s Jaylen Warren that is proving to be the best of the bunch with his electric style of play.

Another difference maker will be receiver Diontae Johnson. The entire NFL is aware that Pickens is frustrated, which is the perfect time to make him a decoy and take advantage of single coverage on Johnson, who is arguably still the best receiver on this team. 

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Guiding Light (The Pick)

The Steelers were able to score a touchdown on their opening drive last week. They were also able to orchestrate another 4th quarter comeback victory. If they can build from this momentum and put up any points in the other quarters of the game this will be an easy victory for Pittsburgh.

But that’s not how this team operates and will make sure the fans are on the edge of their seats until the final whistle blows. The Steelers will win 24-16 to cover the spread and the over. Pickett will throw for two touchdowns and cover the player prop bet in that category which is o/u 1.5.

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