Football Betting Lines — Not Much Time For Steelers to Adapt to Vick
By Charles Jay
The NFL is a league where the teams have to adapt and overcome all the time. The Dallas Cowboys are experiencing that right now, and the Pittsburgh Steelers have recently been thrust into the situation. It is rough timing, as they are going through something of a transition on defense and don’t have a whole lot of time to get ready, but they are moving ahead with Michael Vick as their quarterback as they take on the Baltimore Ravens in the Thursday night football showcase that is slated for 1n 8:30 PM ET kickoff on CBS. Remember that BetAnySports customers have the opportunity to extend the action well into the night, as they place wagers on the side, total and various props with the feature called Live Betting Extra.
Vick’s involvement has been necessitated by the MCL sprain that was suffered by Ben Roethlisberger on Sunday against the St. Louis Rams. After he was removed from the game in the third quarter, Vick entered the lineup and took eighteen snaps, completing five of his six passes.
The four-time Pro Bowl participant has been with the team a little more than a month, so admittedly there has not been a whole lot of time to get accustomed to the offense. So the Pittsburgh offensive staff has been working overtime on ways to maximize what they have.
The good news for them is that what they have is plenty.
In the reduced juice football betting lines posted on this game, according to the people at BetAnySports, the Ravens are laying a field goal on the road:
Baltimore Ravens -3 (+105)
Pittsburgh Steelers +3 (-115)
Over 43.5 points -108
Under 43.5 points -102
The Steelers can certainly expect a great deal of intensity staring at them across the line. The Ravens have lost all three of their games, although they have had opportunities to win all three very late. It is highly unlikely that they can pull themselves into the playoff picture if they start out 0-4.
What will Vick have to work with? Well, more likely than not, this is going to be a team that looks to go to the run first. In this case, that means that Le’Veon Bell, who just came back from a suspension last week, will get his number called plenty of times. He had nineteen carries against the Rams. And DeAngelo Williams, who was second in the league in rushing after the first two weeks, may find himself on the field alongside Bell in some situations. Then there is the possibility of Vick running from scrimmage. Coach Mike Tomlin would like to keep the Ravens guessing if at all possible.
As BetAnySports patrons know, it never hurts to have a guy like Antonio Brown on the other end of ANY quarterback’s passes. Lat year’s leading receiver is setting a blistering pace, with 29 receptions, and he has gotten unexpected accompaniment from Darius Heyward-Bey, the speedster who has been largely disappointing as a pro but has registered 154 yards thus far. Tomlin has talked about finding a “comfort zone” for Vick, and it remains to be seen whether that includes getting the ball far down the field in anywhere near the manner that has been demonstrated by Big Ben.
Pittsburgh is moving the football; in fact, they are third in the league in average yards per drive. The other side of the coin is that the defense has been rather permissive, ranking 30th in that same category and allowing teams to have the ball for an average of three minutes and 26 seconds per possession, which is dead last in the NFL.
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