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Steelers Gab Week 10 NFL Preview – Pittsburgh at Cincinnati

Andy Dalton Leads the Bengals vs the Steelers

Coming off a tough loss Sunday night against the Ravens, the Steelers head to Paul Brown Stadium Sunday to take on a Bengals team that is a surprising 6-2.

Led by rookie QB Andy Dalton, the Bengals have won six games, but five of the six wins have come against teams with losing or .500 records (Buffalo the only winning team they have beaten). So can the Steelers get back to winning Sunday? Here’s our preview and keys to find out.

1. Protect the Football – Points off turnovers has been key to the Bengals’ success this year, and they enter this game tied for seventh in the league with a plus-4 turnover differential. Cincinnati also ranks tied for second in the NFL with nine fumble recoveries and had scored a defensive touchdown in three consecutive games before last Sunday. The Steelers have to be smart with the ball, and Ben Roethlisberger can’t throw bad picks to allow the Bengals to have short fields.

2. Jump Out Early – With the Bengals’ ability to score late and wear teams down, the Steelers will need to keep Cincinnati off the board early. Last week versus the Ravens, Pittsburgh stopped Baltimore three times at the one-yard line to hold the club to a field goal. It was the first time in three games that the Steelers allowed points on an opening drive. They had a 27-7 lead last season and still had to sweat out the game in Cincy on a Monday night. If it’s close entering the fourth quarter, the Bengals will have the edge.

3. Scramble Dalton’s Brains – Dalton has been on a nice run, but he’ll need to be in top form versus the Steelers. The Steelers have held six of the nine quarterbacks it has faced this year to a passer rating lower than 87.0. It has also held six of those nine signal-callers under 200 yards passing. Dalton has never gotten a full dose of a Dick LeBeau defense, and the Steelers should be able to throw their blitz packages and book at him to get him off his game.

Prediction – It’s a huge game for the young Bengals, who will look to take a monster step forward as they host the ticked off Steelers. The Steelers are slowly but surely getting a little healthier, but they still won’t have LaMarr Woodley. The Bengals don’t have the playmakers to stand up to the Steelers hot offense that scored 14 quickly to take the lead that could have stood Sunday vs the Ravens. Steelers win in a close one in a must win for them. Pittsburgh 31 Cincinnati 24

Matt Loede has been in the sports media for over 16 years, with experience covering the MLB, NBA, and NFL. On Sunday’s during football season, you can hear Matt on national networks like Fox Sports Radio, Associated Press, and others. Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Matt studies and talks football inside and out, and is anxious to share his thoughts and comments with readers on a daily basis.

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Thomas Crowley

    November 11, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    Lower score 20-16 steelers

  2. Mark

    November 11, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    I am inclined to think the same thing. I’ll go 24-13

  3. Peter

    November 11, 2011 at 8:34 pm

    Unless we win 56-0, no one will be happy. Jay will complain about our 2nd and 5 play calling in the forth quarter with a 6 touchdown lead…

    • Jay

      November 12, 2011 at 10:54 am

      I think you spend a little too much time thinking about what I have to say, Pete! I don’t know, I mean, you’re not a little funny are ya? It’s okay and all, I mean I’m not, but if you are it’s okay…COME OUT OF THE CLOSET, PETE! WE WILL STILL LOVE YOU!

  4. Who Dey

    November 11, 2011 at 8:51 pm

    27-17 Bengals. Bengals are a young, talented team loaded with speed . They are very good in all 3 phases.

    • Mike

      November 11, 2011 at 8:59 pm

      Go swallow a horse cock who dey piece of shit. I hope james harrison breaks andy dalton’s knee carson palmer style. fuck off…

      • Jay

        November 12, 2011 at 11:03 am

        Although I can’t ever really agree with outsiders posting on here…We have enough in-fighting of our own (wink, wink, Pete xoxo;)…I do agree with “Who Dey” in that this team, IF THEY EVER END UP BEING RUN PROPERLY FROM AN ORGANIZATIONAL STANDPOINT (and, “Who Dey”, you’d have to admit that that’s a tall order for a Bungles fan!)…,BUT, if it happens, they can easily become the class of the AFC North: A.J. Green, Jerome Simpson and Andre Caldwell (2nd and 3rd round picks from just a few years ago), Jordan Shipley, Jermaine Gresham, Ced Benson, Dalton, and on Defense, Carlos Dunlap, Michael Johnson (freak from Georgia Tech), Ray Mauluga, Keith Rivers, Geno Atkins, Domata Peko, Leon Hall, Reggie Nelson (1st rounder from 2007 or 2008) and Taylor Mays! There is talent on this team (there better be after having drafted OUTSIDE of the top ten like only once in the past ten years or something! If they lock up Andrew Whitworth, they have solidified pass protection for the next 5 plus years perhaps. It’s scary. I think we win tomorrow however.

  5. Thomas Crowley

    November 11, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    Ignore mike he’s just a very disturbed man

    • The Tony

      November 12, 2011 at 9:47 am

      Ha that’s true. Points for the creativity though.

      However I don’t see us scoring 31 against the Bongols defense the way our redzone offense plays

  6. Mike

    November 12, 2011 at 10:28 am

    maybe i am disturbed crowley or maybe i’d just like to see you dead in a gutter somewhere. you know how this ends…go fuck yourself crowley.

    • George H

      November 12, 2011 at 11:03 am

      Chill Mike, this blog offers more insight than that garbage you are tossing out

  7. Peter

    November 12, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    I am honored Jay. But i am already spoken for. Believe it or not i was able to get a girl drunk enough to marry me and have two kids. Only two times we have had sex but that’s marriage for you.

    Jay and Mark are just so negative about everything. Your laundry list of players on the Bengals that you are trumpeting as being such great picks have won what exactly? I will take wallace, brown and sanders all day long. None of them first rounders. Our 1st rd DE’s are going to be very good but you will be disappointed if you think they are going to make a ton of plays. Our DL has one job…stop the run and occupy blockers.

    Its Saturday, i’m done. Go Steelers!!!! Wish me luck tonight though, I am going to dry hump my wife until she gives in….

    • Mark

      November 12, 2011 at 2:52 pm

      Hey Pete, how did I get in this? LOL. Anyway, my good friend Jay and I just kinda calls em’ as we sees em’. I really dont think that any fan should be so much a homer that when a team plays poorly in some aspect of the game that they (the team) shouldnt be called out on it.Really, to call me or Jay negative is not accurate. If negativity means you can discuss poor play calling or plain poor play openly, then I guess I am negative. I am a 35+years Steeler fanatic and I probably demand perfection too often. Ok, thats my fault. But I honestly would never call myself or Jay negative. I am optomistic every gameday no matter the opponent or record. I just find it healing to be able to discuss these things when the team lets me down. Its easy to knock on poor play, but its just as easy to praise good play and ignore what is often overlooked in the joy of winning. Sometimes Steeler play/play calling leaves me amazed and then I go on this board and see that I am not alone in seeing the problems. So Pete, next time the team plays well be assured that I am right there singing praise. But know that when the team is playing poor and self-destructive I will be here to talk about it and point out the short-comings; at least by how I see it from my living room.

    • Jay

      November 13, 2011 at 10:00 am

      Okay, Pete…They have done nothing to this point but that’s what I am trying to say is that they are all young and high round draft picks…If you woulda noticed the word, “IF” I put in there as in, “If they ever end up being run properly (inbetween the lines it reads like us)” then these young talented, high round draft picks will make a difference; which is what I was trying to say—down the road be wary of the Bengals IF they develop these guys (in the past, the reason for their faux pas were more related and revolved around the fact that they simply didn’t amass young talent—now they have, we’ll see what they do with it!);

      Also, yes, in the past, 3-4 D-linemen weren’t supposed to do anything except occupy blocks and let LB’s do their thing. But this is a different NFL, Pete if you’ve been paying attention: with all the passing going on, INTERIOR D-LINEMEN, whether they are 3-4 or 4-3 or whatever, are asked to get after the QB a little more than they were asked to a number of years ago. Secondly and more specifically to the Steelers, years ago A. Smith (4th round) and B. Keisel (7th round?) and other guys who were journeymen (with the exception of Casey Hampton who was a 2001 1st rounder) were not asked to do more than occupy blocks and disrupt the run…NOW, HOWEVER, we drafted two guys (Hood and Heyward) in the first round! You don’t take guys that high to NOT make plays, regardless of the scheme. You take them that high because the Steelers see the landscape of the NFL which has become predominantly passing and guys up front need to get after the QB, ESPECIALLY those that were picked in round 1! Pay attention to the league, bro!

  8. Peter

    November 12, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    Fair enough. Just a different perspective.

  9. Peter

    November 13, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    YOur second paragraph is just flat inaccurate Jay. The expectations are higher, yes, but the scheme is and always will be set up so the LB’s make the plays, especially in passing downs. If Heyward and Hood make more plays because they end up better than 91 and 99, so be it. I pay attention and it is quite clear that you have not. Your opinion does not matter to the steelers. LeBeau’s is the only one that does.

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