The Vikings fell victim to the Detroit Lions’ first win of the season on Sunday. Take nothing away from the Lions, but Minnesota will be quite disappointed. They now need to come back strong from that result. Let’s take a look at the Minnesota Vikings vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Week 14 matchup, the NFL odds, and make a pick and prediction.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Minnesota Vikings pick, prediction | Week 14
- Spread: Vikings -3 (Odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook)
- Moneyline: Vikings -165, Steelers +145
- Over/Under: 44.5
The Vikings were second place in the division, trying to keep up with the Packers — and then they lost to Detroit on Sunday. The loss puts them at 5-7, with the Rams, Packers, and both matchups with the Bears still to play.
Minnesota has struggled this season and their offense has wilted. It’s confusing after Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen had a monster year catching passes from Kirk Cousins last season.
Thielen suffered a high-ankle sprain in the Detroit game, and he will be sidelined along with Dalvin Cook. The calls for head coach Mike Zimmer and his staff to vacate their positions are growing louder, and the Vikings will need a strong run in the home stretch to silence the critics.
The Steelers cling to playoff hope
As for the Steelers, a win against the Ravens will look good on their record. But we know (and they know) they were mere inches from losing the game. The Steelers are not in a strong position this season. Their offensive line is making everything harder for Big Ben, Najee Harris, and Co., and running the ball is a serious grind for the rookie back.
The Steelers haven’t exactly been reliable defensively either. However, they only allowed 19 points against the Ravens, and the return of T.J. Watt will undoubtedly provide a boost.
There’s a playoff spot up for grabs if one of these AFC North teams can put together a run in the final few games. Pittsburgh is just two games back following the win on Sunday, and the Ravens will struggle down the stretch.
So, if Pittsburgh can clean up their act and get to work, they could challenge for the division (or at least finish a strong second). Sunday’s win against Baltimore should provide some momentum. Pittsburgh needed that one to stay in the race and stand a chance in a head-to-head tiebreaker scenario.
Steelers vs. Vikings betting trends
Minnesota can score, but they can also concede points quite freely. They have been a part of back-and-forth games all season long. As a result, they’re 7-5 on over/unders and have hit overs in their last three games (an average of 60 points per game).
The Vikings have lost their last two against the spread (ATS) after having a three-game win streak ATS prior to those two games.
The loss of Thielen will hinder scoring points a little, as he is the most reliable red-zone target for Cousins.
Pittsburgh went on a two-week streak of overs by conceding 41 points a game. Subsequently, they tidied themselves up a little last weekend against the Ravens and went back to the under as a result. The Steelers have cashed only four overs all season. Additionally, Pittsburgh is 5-7 ATS.
Steelers vs. Vikings prediction
This will be a tough matchup for the Vikings with the loss of Thielen and no Cook. Alexander Mattison is one of the best No. 2 backs in the league. He can do a solid job as the starter in the absence of Cook, but Pittsburgh’s front won’t make that easy.
On the flip side, the Vikings are one of the worst run defenses in the league. Harris could have a big day. When he’s rolling, it opens things up for the rest of the Steelers’ offense. I like Pittsburgh to pull away in this one and win it by a touchdown.
Steelers vs. Vikings Prediction: Steelers 31, Vikings 21
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