[This game has been rescheduled to Tuesday, December 1 at 8PM ET]
|39.7%||9||Opp. Rush %||38.3%||5|
|60.3%||24||Opp. Pass %||61.7%||28|
- Pittsburgh is 3-1 against the spread in their past four games versus Baltimore and 2-0 ATS in the two career starts Lamar Jackson has made against them.
- Pittsburgh is allowing 1.9 sacks plus turnovers per game as an offense, the fewest in the league.
- The Steelers are forcing 5.9 sacks plus turnovers per game as a defense, the most in the league.
- Pittsburgh is allowing 5.3 yards per passing play (second) while Baltimore is allowing 5.6 (third).
- Just 29.4% of the Pittsburgh rushing attempts have gained five or more yards, the lowest rate in the league.
- Baltimore has run 14 plays inside of the opponent’s 5-yard line this season, tied for 28th in the league. Last season, they were tied for the league lead (40).
- Opposing teams are averaging 6.7 red zone plays per game versus Baltimore, the fewest in the league.
Trust = spike production for that player
Bust = down-week production for that player’s standards
Robert Griffin: With Lamar Jackson one of the many players for the Ravens on COVID-IR (to go along with Trace McSorley), Baltimore is down to Griffin and Tyler Huntley as their remaining quarterbacks left for Sunday. Griffin drew the start for the Ravens in Week 17 against the Steelers a year ago, completing 11-of-21 passes for 96 yards and an interception, rushing eight times for 50 yards. Circumstances are quite a bit different this time with the Ravens struggling to control infections. If they do play Sunday, Baltimore is working with multiple pieces on their offensive line out from the start of the season. Griffin offers some mobility and rushing production, but this is a tough spot to consider him offering much of a ceiling.
Ben Roethlisberger: Roethlisberger is 28th among all passers in yards per pass attempt (6.7 Y/A), but is 12th in passing points per attempt (0.493) on the strength of a 6.3% touchdown rate, which ranks sixth in the league. The Steelers have ramped up their passing dependency, with 42, 46, and 46 passes the past three games after 35.1 per game over their opening seven games.
The past two weeks, Big Ben has thrown 46 passes in each game with Pittsburgh outright winning those games by a combined score of 63-13. Pittsburgh has thrown the ball 61% of the time on early downs the past two weeks (fourth in the league) after 53% of the time prior (19th).
The Ravens are fourth in passing points allowed per game (14.0) and have allowed just one passer (Patrick Mahomes) to have more than two touchdown passes in a game against them this season. They have allowed four QB1 scoring weeks this season, but Mahomes (8.6 rushing points), Carson Wentz (10.9), Cam Newton (8.1) and Ryan Tannehill (3.5) all chipped in with rushing contributions in those games.
Roethlisberger threw for just 5.7 yards per pass when these teams played in Week 8 for 182 yards in the air. With the Steelers turning to the short passing game more, Roethlisberger is a floor-based QB2.
Steelers RBs: This game has taken quite a number of turns and James Conner is also out on COVID-IR for Week 12. Behind him, the Steelers will turn to Benny Snell as their primary rusher. Through the start of Snell’s career, Pittsburgh has strictly used him as a runner only and not in Conner’s full role. Snell has five catches for 23 yards for the start of his career. Jaylen Samuels could be dusted off as a pass catcher, but also is dealing with a quad injury that has cost him practice time to close the week. If he is also unavailable, rookie Anthony McFarland will have a larger role than expected. Snell is the safer, rushing-dependent FLEX.
Baltimore has been run on the past two weeks, allowing 121 yards to Damien Harris in Week 10 and 133 yards to Derrick Henry last week while Brandon Williams is still expected to be out this week on COVID-IR.
Gus Edwards: With Mark Ingram and J.K Dobbins out Thursday while on COVID-IR, Edwards will lead this backfield with Justice Hill mixed in. In the past two times these teams have played, Edwards has been solid, rushing 16 times for 87 yards in Week 8, and carrying 21 times for 130 yards in Week 17 to close last season out. When these teams played in Week 8, Baltimore running backs rushed 31 times for 200 yards. Edwards has 12 career receptions, so we are largely leaning on rushing output here. Edwards is a volume-based RB2.
Steelers WRs: With another score last week, Chase Claypool is the first rookie wideout to have 10 touchdowns in his first 10 career games. Claypool has not hit 70 yards receiving in a game since Week 6, but has eight or more targets in each of his past four games after hitting that mark in just one of his opening six games. He leads the team with four end zone targets over that span. That includes a 5-42-1 game on nine targets versus Baltimore in Week 8. Claypool is a touchdown-centric WR despite the tougher matchup.
Baltimore is fourth in the NFL in points allowed per target to opposing wideouts (1.63) and did a solid job against Pittsburgh on the outside in the first meeting, holding Claypool to 42 yards and Diontae Johnson to one catch for six yards. Johnson received just three targets that game. He was nicked up early on, but played 77% of the snaps and ran a pass route on 88.2% of the team dropbacks. In his six other games in which he has played more than 24% of the snaps, Johnson has seen 10, 13, 15, 10, 11, and 16 targets come his direction.
While we should potentially keep our expectations in check for a ceiling performance, Johnson should be expected to clear the low bar he set in the first game between these teams and despite the Ravens success, they did just allow Tennessee wideouts to secure 12-of-17 targets for 203 yards and a score last week. Johnson is a volume-based WR2.
When these teams played the first time, it was JuJu Smith-Schuster who led this trio with seven catches and 67 yards. Smith-Schuster picked up a toe injury last week against the Jaguars, so monitor his status heading into Thursday. Smith-Schuster is averaging 5.8 receptions per game and has at least seven receptions in three of his past four games versus the Ravens. If he is able to play, JuJu is a lower-end WR2 in PPR formats and a higher-end WR3 in those that do not weigh receptions.
Marquise Brown: Brown hit a new low last week, which is saying something in his case. He was blanked for 0-0-0 on three targets against a Tennessee defense that has had plenty of struggles on the back end. Brown now has six catches for 55 yards combined over his past four games on 16 targets. Those three targets were not even a season-low, either, as Brown had just two targets when these teams played in Week 8, catching one for a three-yard touchdown.
Brown has not finished higher than WR42 in a week since Week 5 with just two top-30 scoring weeks on the season. If holding a candle for something positive, Brown is fully healthy, playing 81% of the offensive snaps after 51% as a rookie. Strictly looking for a big play against a tough defense, Brown is an all-or-nothing swing as a WR5/FLEX.
Willie Snead: Snead has out-targeted Brown in three of the past four games, collectively out-targeting him 25-16 over that span after receiving 15 targets over his first six games. Snead has now produced as many splash plays (20-yard gains plus touchdowns) this season (10) as Brown on 19 fewer targets. Of course, Snead has been volatile himself, posting three weeks as a top-24 scorer and seven as WR60 or lower. One of the spike weeks came when these teams played in Week 8, as Snead caught 5-of-7 targets for 106 yards. Like Brown, Snead is a swing from the heels WR4/FLEX that has a low floor.
Eric Ebron: Like most tight ends, we can ask ourselves one simple question with Ebron… did he score a touchdown? Ebron has been a top-10 scorer in each of the four games he has reached the end zone and the TE19 or lower in five of his other six games without a score. He has 52 yards or fewer in either game. One of those touchdowns did come against the Ravens when he caught 4-of-5 targets for 48 yards to go with the score. Ebron is a touchdown-dependent TE2.
More Week 12 Fantasy breakdowns from The Worksheet: