The slumping Baltimore Ravens (8-8) take on the up-and-down Pittsburgh Steelers (8-7-1) this Sunday in a pivotal clash with playoff implications for both teams.
The Steelers need their defense to step up again after they absolutely clobbered Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield on Monday night.
T.J. Watt registered four sacks (and is one away from the single-season record), and the Steelers had nine overall as the Browns offensive line got shredded. Pittsburgh was able to win by double-digits despite its offense not playing well in what was Ben Roethlisberger‘s likely last home game.
On the Ravens’ side, it’s still unknown if Lamar Jackson is going to play. He’s practiced only once in the last 24 days due to the ankle injury he suffered on Dec. 12.
Baltimore has also lost five in a row and faces an uphill climb to make the playoffs. Like Pittsburgh, it needs Jacksonville to beat Indianapolis, but also needs Miami to lose to New England, and L.A. (Chargers) to lose to Las Vegas.
In the Steelers case, they only need the Jaguars to beat the Colts, plus not have the Chargers-Raiders game end in a tie. That’s how small the difference is for clinching between these two teams.
Let’s dive in to find the best Steelers vs Ravens prop bets for this weekend’s AFC North clash.
Please note that all NFL gameday odds and lines are current as of 1 p.m. ET on Thursday, January 6.
Steelers vs Ravens Prop Bets: NFL Week 18 Prop Betting Picks
1st Scoring Play: Ravens Field Goal (+305) at Caesars
Wager: 1 Unit
I got screwed last week when I did this for Steelers-Browns, but I still got it half right where the Steelers would start slow. There was no score after the first quarter, but the Browns’ offense started even slower.
Now, I do think Pittsburgh has what it takes to slow down the Ravens’ offense, especially if Jackson doesn’t play. Tyler Huntley is a good runner but isn’t a better thrower.
- Read our full Steelers vs Ravens Predictions & Best Bets.
That said, the Steelers always start games slow (especially on the road) and have one of the worst first-half point differentials in the NFL this year. Pittsburgh also may be without cornerback Joe Haden this week as he’s on the COVID-19 list.
Even when these two teams played in Pittsburgh, it was Baltimore who drew first blood with a touchdown.
I don’t expect that to happen this time, but I do think the best kicker in football will make his mark first, even after the Ravens stall in Steelers territory.
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Steelers Win By 1-6 Points (+420) at Caesars
Wager: 1 Unit
This also seems like a risky pick, but I’m going all out in what will likely be Roethlisberger’s final game as a Steeler. It’s only fitting that it will come against his biggest rival.
This is going to be a typical close game that this rivalry always has, and I think Roethlisberger can string together at least one more adequate performance.
He had a great game against the Ravens back in December after he threw for 236 yards and two touchdowns. He was able to secure his 52nd all-time game-winning drive, which is fourth all-time.
Not having Diontae Johnson is going to stink, but I still think the Steelers can do a little bit of damage in the passing game. Pat Freiermuth has really stepped up as of late with Eric Ebron (knee) out. He’s developing into Roethlisberger’s security blanket, just like Heath Miller once was.
Coming into this game, Freiermuth needs just 56 yards to hit 500 on the year.
Najee Harris is also coming off his best performance of the season against Cleveland when he finished with 188 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries.
Look for the Steelers to eke out a win here, but I don’t think it’ll be enough to get into the playoffs.
1st Team To Turnover: Steelers (-116) at Caesars
Wager: 1 Unit
I’d say the Ravens if this were in Pittsburgh, but I still feel like Roethlisberger will be the one to turn it over first. At times, Baltimore hasn’t been kind to him and he has at least one interception in his last three road games.
In all three of those contests, Roethlisberger has been the one to turn the ball over first.
I know the Ravens’ secondary is banged up, but look out for Chuck Clark in this one. He had two interceptions off Matthew Stafford last week and is one of the more underrated secondary players in the NFL.
Take the Steelers with this one, even though I have them in the winning margin to overcome it in our NFL Pick of the Week series.