Game #12 for Washington comes in the form of the undefeated Steelers!

Washington last played on Thanksgiving Day and have seen their schedule changed to accommodate the Steelers after their schedule was changed last week due to a COVID outbreak on the Baltimore Ravens team. With the Giants upset win yesterday against the Seahawks, the Washington Football team is a half game off the pace now in the NFC East with a 4-7 record. With two losses against the Giants this season, Washington cannot win the NFC East if they finish tied with the Giants. Today’s game against the undefeated Steelers has Washington as steep underdogs.

For Pittsburgh, Ben Roethlisberger has statistically been in the Top-5 of all quarterbacks this season and a key reason why they are undefeated this late into the season. Big Ben has been playing with a stiff knee issue that has been bothering him for over four weeks. Washington will once again start veteran Alex Smith this week, but he has not faced a defense as good as Pittsburgh. The 2020 Steelers defense is said to be the best in the NFL according to Pro Football Focus.

Once again, Dwayne Haskins will be Smith’s backup after Kyle Allen suffered an ankle injury four weeks ago. Head coach Ron Rivera went with the veteran Alex Smith as his starting quarterback, and this game today will be a true test against a top of the NFL team.

Washington rookie runner, Antonio Gibson, was named the top offensive rookie last week. Some are thinking he is a very special player, and he has shown to be a top playmaker for this Washington team.

For coach Rivera, he knows that most of the pressure is on Pittsburgh. They are expected to win and there is all of that talk of the rare undefeated season that has been turned in by Dolphins and Patriots once upon a time. Rivera was two wins away from joining them back in 2015 when his team was 14-0 in and suffered their only regular season loss in their fifteenth game. Dealing with that pressure will help Rivera’s team today in playing the undefeated Steelers.

“The one thing that we tried to do was we tried to avoid the conversation of it, Rivera said Friday. We tried to keep it one game at a time, one game at a time and then we see what happens. When you start getting ahead and start thinking about the next one, the next one and even the next one after that, now you put yourself in a tough spot.”

It almost sounds like Rivera’s baseball counterpart, Dave Martinez, with the go 1-0 every day. Baseball doesn’t play with the same starting pitcher ace every game. If the baseball season was 16 games in a season — who knows. Rivera knows he is the deep underdog today. They say “on any given Sunday” but that applies to Monday games also.

When you are not expected to win, you can play loose. Look at the Giants yesterday in their upset of the Seahawks with Colt McCoy in as their spot quarterback after an injury to their starter. This is a great opportunity for Washington to show that they can play great football with Smith at quarterback. They are learning together and coming off of consecutive wins.

I’m feeling better and feeling more comfortable,” Smith said.

For Smith’s miracle comeback, he has now shown that he can lead his team to wins, and this game is against one of the best teams in the NFL this season. Smith is set to make $19 million next season with both Dwayne Haskins and Kyle Allen under team control as well as the chances that the team could acquire another quarterback in next year’s draft.

Pittsburgh is favored in this game by 5 1/2 points on the William Hill Sportsbook:

  • Steelers vs. Washington spread: Pittsburgh -5.5
  • Steelers vs. Washington over-under: 41.5 points
  • Steelers vs. Washington money line: Pittsburgh -250, Washington +200
  • PIT: Steelers are 8-2 against the spread in their last 10 home games against teams with losing road records
  • WASH: Washington is 1-6 against the spread in its last seven Week 13 contests

This game is televised on FOX at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 5:00 pm ET.

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