Steelers vs. Bills Preview and Predictions

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The Pittsburgh Steelers are making a late push to climb back into the AFC postseason picture and go for their fourth consecutive victory when they visit the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. The Bills also are trying to stay in the playoff hunt and may have to run the table as they kick off a three-game homestand against Pittsburgh.

The Steelers have bounced back from a four-game losing streak by posting three straight double-digit victories to remain in a tie with Baltimore for first place in the AFC North. The Ravens currently own the tiebreaker, but still have to pay a visit to Pittsburgh, which is 9-1 under coach Mike Tomlin in December of the past three seasons. Buffalo's only path to the postseason is via the wild card and blowing a 15-point lead in last week's 38-24 loss at Oakland left little margin for error. "We have to win this game to have any hopes of getting into the playoffs," acknowledged Bills coach Rex Ryan.

TV: 1 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Steelers -2. O/U: 46.5

ABOUT THE BILLS (6-6): Quarterback Tyrod Taylor walked away from the podium during Wednesday's media conference amid questions of his future with his numbers dipping across the board, but he received staunch support from his coach. "I just think it is easy to sit back and be critical, but if you are playing without five receivers in the game ... I think it is going to affect you," Ryan said. Barring any setbacks, Taylor could have both his top two wide receivers -- Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods -- in the lineup for the first time since Week 2 to complement running back LeSean McCoy, who is coming off consecutive 100-yard games. The bigger worry for Ryan and the Bills is a defense that surrendered 29 unanswered points to the Raiders.

ABOUT THE STEELERS (7-5): With Ben Roethlisberger at the helm of a high-powered attack that features running back Le'Veon Bell and wide receiver Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh's offense typically garners the headlines. However, a much-maligned defense that was pierced for 113 points during the four-game skid has answered the bell during the winning streak, allowing a total of 30 points and holding the New York Giants to one touchdown until the final minute of last week's 24-14 victory. "There's no time to slap ourselves on the back," cautioned 38-year-old linebacker James Harrison, part of a unit that has registered 13 sacks in the past three games. Tight end Ladarius Green has bolstered the offense with six catches for 110 yards and a TD last week.


1. Brown needs seven receptions to break the record by Marvin Harrison for most catches (469) during any four-year span.

2. Bills backup RB Mike Gillislee has rushed for six touchdowns in the past seven games.

3. Tomlin can become the eighth coach in history with 100 wins in their first eight seasons.

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Ralph Wilson Stadium
Orchard Park, New York, USA.
Capacity: 73,079

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Last Injuries

Buffalo Bills

  • Dion Dawkins

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Dawkins was lifted from the last game with a shoulder injury, and it is unknown if he will line up against the Raiders on Sunday.

  • Micah Hyde

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Hyde departed the last game due to an ankle injury, and it is uncertain if he will face the Raiders on Sunday.

  • Zack Moss

    Prob Sun | probable

    Moss sat out the last game with a toe injury, but it is likely that he will suit up against the Raiders on Sunday.

  • Dawson Knox

    Prob Sun | probable

    Knox missed the last game with a concussion and is going through the league's protocol. It is likely that he will be cleared in time for Sunday's matchup versus the Raiders.

  • Mario Addison

    Lower Body
    Ques Sun | questionable

    Addison exited the last game with a lower-body injury, and it is unclear if he will play against the Raiders on Sunday.

  • John Brown

    Ques Sun | questionable

    Brown was forced from the previous game with a calf injury, and his availability for Sunday's contest against the Raiders is in question.

  • Cole Beasley

    Prob Sun | probable

    Beasley is dealing with injuries to his hip and thumb, but it is expected that he will partake in Sunday's battle with the Rams.

  • Ed Oliver

    Prob Sun | probable

    Oliver is hampered by a knee injury, but it is projected that he will take the field Sunday against the Rams.

Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Derek Watt

    Out indefinitely | out

    Watt sustained a Grade 2 hamstring pull and will miss an undetermined length of time.

  • Diontae Johnson

    day-to-day | questionable

    Johnson left the last game and has been placed in the concussion protocol. His status for Week 4 against the Titans is in question.

  • Marcus Allen

    day-to-day | doubtful

    Allen has plantar fascitis in his foot and is unlikely to play against the Titans in Week 4.

  • David DeCastro

    Prob Sun | probable

    DeCastro has sat out the previous two games with a knee injury, but it is likely that he will play against the Texans on Sunday.

  • Bud Dupree

    Prob Sun | probable

    Dupree has a shoulder injury, but it is anticipated that he will play Sunday versus the Texans.

  • Tyson Alualu

    Prob Sun | probable

    Alualu is tending to a knee injury, but he is expected to face the Texans on Sunday.

  • Diontae Johnson

    Prob Sun | probable

    Johnson is managing a toe injury, but it is likely that he will line up against the Texans on Sunday.

  • JuJu Smith-Schuster

    Prob Sun | probable

    Smith-Schuster is bothered by a knee injury, but it is projected that he will take the field Sunday versus the Texans.