NFL Wild Card Preview - Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Kansas City Chiefs

NFL Wild Card Preview - Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Kansas City Chiefs

Cole Paganelli
1 year ago
3 min read
NFL Wild Card Preview - Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Kansas City Chiefs

The Pittsburgh Steelers and Kansas City Chiefs will meet in the Wild Card round in the AFC on Sunday. These two teams played earlier in the season, with the Chiefs winning convincingly at Arrowhead Stadium. Ahead of this meeting, the Chiefs are 12.5-point favorites as they are expected to move onto the Divisional Round, while the Steelers will look to pull the biggest upset of Wild Card weekend.

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Pittsburgh Steelers needed a win and a lot of help in Week 18 to get into the playoffs, and they got everything they needed. They beat the Baltimore Ravens in a tight game, while the Colts lost in a stunning upset to the Jaguars and the Raiders avoided a tie in their win against the Chargers. As a result, the Steelers claimed the final playoff spot in the AFC, and their reward is to play one of the hottest teams in the league in the Chiefs.

In order for the Steelers to have a better showing than they did against the Chiefs earlier this season, they will need to do better defensively this time around. Kansas City scored the first 30 points of the game in their first meeting, with the game being fully out of hand by the time the Steelers got on the board. If they can’t hang with the Chiefs early in this game, they aren’t exactly built to come back from a big deficit.

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Kansas City Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs finished the regular season with a win over the Denver Broncos to finish the season at 12-5. The Chiefs ended the regular season with wins in nine of their last 10 games and may be the hottest team in the NFL coming into this contest with the Steelers. Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs have been operating at a high level on offense, scoring 28 points or more in five straight games, and will look to extend that streak here.

Kansas City will look to have as much success on defense as they did in their first meeting with the Steelers. They forced three Steelers turnovers in that game, which helped them win in a lopsided fashion. The Chiefs may not need to win the turnover battle to beat the Steelers, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt to come out on top in that area again.

Keys To The Game

The biggest key to this game for the Pittsburgh Steelers is getting their offense moving. Pittsburgh has scored 30 points in a game just one time this season, in a loss to the Los Angeles Chargers. The Steelers may need a minimum of 30 points in order to keep up with the Chiefs, who have been firing on all cylinders as of late.

Kansas City’s biggest key to this game will be keeping Najee Harris from having a big game. Harris and the Steelers’ running game are Pittsburgh’s only real chance to keep the ball away from the Chiefs and to move the ball given Ben Roethlisberger’s struggles this season. If the Chiefs can keep the Steelers from moving the ball on the ground, the Steelers have virtually no path to victory in this contest.

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