Last week I finally found some success with my pick of the week as the Steelers outshone the Bills to bring me to 1-2 on the year. I’m not a huge believer in betting on Week 4 of the preseason but as always; if there’s an edge…take it!
Carolina Panthers vs Pittsburgh Steelers: PIT -3.5 (5Dimes)
This pick is based more on psychological factors than anything else. Imagine being a young Steelers player trying to crack the 53 man roster which gets named virtually after this game against the Panthers. You are sitting in the locker room and Mike Tomlin is pacing the room in front of you, giving a passionate spiel about how proud the Pittsburgh franchise is and what an honour it would be to make such a team. “This organization holds more Vince Lombardi trophies than any other, and you all have the chance to be a part of the next Championship run!” I’ll tell you this; I’d be amped and ready to perform at home in front of the Pittsburgh faithful with a roster spot on the line.
There is a reason that Tomlin is 5-0 in Week 4 preseason games and 18-6 overall: he cares about winning. Another reason is the play of veteran backups such as Charlie Batch at QB. Yeah the guy is old, but he’s reliable.
On the other hand, we have Carolina who will want nothing more than to finish the game quickly and start prepping for Tampa Bay in Week 1. Rivera is 3-4 in preseason games and lost his only Week 4 matchup last year. He has hinted that his starters will probably not play (I wouldn’t risk Cam Newton either) or will see minimal time. At QB, this leaves us with the ever-declining Derek Anderson who struggles to hit open receivers even in ‘Walk-Through’ practices and Jimmy Clausen who will still be having nightmares of the Black and Gold defence that crushed his manhood 2 years ago in Pittsburgh.
OverallLay the points here and finish the preseason with some extra cash in your pockets.
NFL Pick: Steelers (-3.5)