Steelers vs Eagles NFL

Steelers vs Eagles NFL | In-State Rivals Continue Annual Preseason Series

Written by on August 10, 2021

State rivals Pittsburgh and Philadelphia play every NFL preseason and they meet Thursday night in the City of Brotherly Love in Week 1 of the exhibition slate, although the Steelers do have a game under their belts already. Philly is a very short favorite on the NFL odds.

How to Bet Steelers at Eagles NFL Odds & TV Info

  • When: Thursday, 7:30 PM ET
  • Where: Lincoln Financial Field
  • TV: None nationally live
  • Radio:
  • Opening NFL Lines: Eagles -1 (total 34.5)

Why Bet on Pittsburgh?

The Steelers and Cowboys will be the only teams to play four preseason games as they met in last week’s Hall of Fame Game and the Steelers won 16-3. The first Pittsburgh offensive series ended in a turnover, but the first defensive series produced a goal-line stand at the 5-yard line.

The Steelers briefly used such regulars as receivers Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson, linebacker Alex Highsmith and cornerback Cameron Sutton. Claypool was shaken up on a diving 45-yard reception in the second quarter, but walked off by himself. Rookie first-round pick Najee Harris rushed seven times for 22 yards; the No. 24 overall pick also added a three-yard reception.

Top QB Ben Roethlisberger didn’t play and it’s not clear if he will here. Neither did star linebacker TJ Watt. He’s not practicing until he gets a new contract.  Watt — who finished second to Aaron Donald in Defensive Player of the Year voting last year after recording 15 sacks — has been in attendance during camp but has been limited to participating in some individual drills.

Watt reportedly wants a contract extension with an average annual value of $28 million-30 million. He wants to be the highest-paid edge rusher in NFL history. (Joey Bosa of the Los Angeles Chargers got a deal with an average annual value of $27 million.)

In the battle for the backup QB job, Mason Rudolph played the first three series against the Cowboys and completed 6 of 9 passes for 84 yards. The Steelers scored no points, and Rudolph lost a fumble on a botched handoff to Claypool. Dwayne Haskins, the 15th overall choice of Washington in 2019, completed 8 of 13 passes for 54 yards. He played four series and led the Steelers to nine points.

Defensively, the best Steelers player was linebacker Alex Highsmith, who had one sack and two tackles for loss. Highsmith, selected in the third round of the 2020 draft out of Charlotte, had two sacks and 21 total pressures in his inaugural NFL 2020 campaign and he saw more time late in the season after Bud Dupree was hurt. Dupree is now in Tennessee after signing a five-year, $82.5 million contract with the Titans.

Why Bet on Philadelphia?

This marks the first time that Philadelphia will play in a competitive setting since its Week 17 loss to Washington that capped a disappointing 4-11-1 campaign in 2020.

It will be the head coaching debut of the Eagles’ Nick Sirianni, the former Colts offensive coordinator. Thus, we don’t know what his feelings are about playing starters in meaningless games. We would imagine that second-year QB Jalen Hurts, the presumed starter, will see at least some time. He has been rather inconsistent in camp. Sirianni said that he looks at Hurts’ decision-making, accuracy, his ability to create plays, and his leadership.

“We know that to be a full package as a quarterback, you’ve got to have all those things, and I’m glad he has that ability to run because not everybody has that,” Sirianni said.

After Carson Wentz was jettisoned to the Indianapolis Colts in a trade and Nate Sudfeld signed with the San Francisco 49ers, the Eagles brought in Joe Flacco and Nick Mullens this offseason, giving the team three quarterbacks who started at least four games in 2020. Flacco has been sharing the knowledge he has amassed over his 14-year career in the film room with his younger counterparts in Hurts and Mullens.

Philly will not have rookie first-round receiver DeVonta Smith as he is dealing with a knee injury that likely will keep the reigning Heisman Trophy winner out the entire preseason. No Eagles rookie wideout has ever reached 1,000 yards. DeSean Jackson holds the Eagles franchise record for receiving yards in a rookie season with 912.

Tight end Zach Ertz, who was rumored to be traded or released this offseason, has outplayed Dallas Goedert thus far in camp. If he remains with the Eagles, he may force to get him the ball at the expense of Goedert.

Philadelphia’s defense has had an excellent camp thus far, becoming a unit that appears to be capable of carrying an offense that has struggled to find its footing.

Game Trends

  • Steelers are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 Thursday games.
  • Steelers are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games as a road underdog.
  • Steelers are 23-8-2 ATS in their last 33 games as an underdog.
  • Eagles are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 home games.
  • Eagles are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 Thursday games.
  • Home team is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings.

Expert Prediction

  • Steelers 23, Eagles 20
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