The Dallas Cowboys are back on the road to face a sea of terrible towels on Sunday afternoon. The Steelers have only lost one game at Heinz Field this season, and that was without quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Will this be the second? Cowboys Blitz writers share their predictions below.
Dallas Cowboys (7-1) at Pittsburgh Steelers (4-4)
Sunday, Nov. 13, 3:25 p.m. CST
Heinz Field, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
Laurie: Dallas will need to hit a less-than 100% Ben Roethlisberger without constantly blitzing, because the Steelers QB has the anticipation and moose-like strength in the pocket to leak the ball out to LeVeon Bell, who can be a nightmare after the catch. Antonio Brown and Sammie Coates have the speed to give Brandon Carr trouble depending on alignment, with the former ready to test Orlando Scandrick’s hamstrings with the sharpest routes in the game. With Cam Heyward and Ryan Shazier back in the lineup Ezekiel Elliott will need some help from the Cowboys’ interior to dominate down and distance. If they can, Dak Prescott will have every opportunity to get Dez Bryant going against the Steelers secondary, needing multiple big plays while Cole Beasley keeps the chains moving. Throw out last week’s lackluster showing from Pittsburgh, the question is can Dallas stick tight with an explosive Steelers offense on the road? Cowboys 28, Steelers 31
Bobby: I know there are a lot of folks worried about this game, and it’s not without reason. Pittsburgh screamed to a 4-1 start and has only struggled over the last month due to a series of injuries. When the Steelers are healthy, they are one of the five best teams in football. But they aren’t healthy right now, and they’re failing to rush the passer to boot. Pittsburgh is tied for last in the NFL with 11 sacks through eight games, putting them on pace for 22. To put that in perspective, Dallas’ much-maligned pass rush managed 31 sacks in 2015 and 27 in 2014. The Giants and Eagles have shown that the way to disrupt Dak Prescott’s rhythm is to put pressure on him and hurry his decisions; there is no indication that Pittsburgh will be able to do that on Sunday. And while Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell are two of the most dynamic offensive threats in football, the Steelers are really bruised at the skill positions. DeAngelo Williams, Markus Wheaton, and Darrius Heyward-Bey are all out Sunday with injuries. Ben Roethlisberger still isn’t 100% and they’ve spent all season without Martavis Bryant due to an injury. While this game isn’t a slam dunk, I feel like too much is in Dallas’ favor on paper. Cowboys 27, Steelers 20.
Cami: I’m not too worried about the Cowboys putting up points and moving the ball, i’m more concerned about the Dallas defense being able to get off the field. Even if not fully healthy, Roethlisberger is arguably the best quarterback the Cowboys have faced all season. However, Rod Marinelli and Co. should be able to bring the pressure on the Steelers underwhelming offensive line. Heinz Field is not an easy place to play in, where Pittsburgh has only lost one game this season and that happened to be with Landry Jones under center against the Patriots. Momentum may be powerful, but so is a team who is desperate to not fall into a four-game skid. Cowboys 24, Steelers 30
Jonah: The Pittsburgh Steelers are one of the mystery teams in the NFL that I have yet to figure out how good they really are. They are 4-4, as they had marquee wins against Kansas City, Cincinnati and Washington, but they also lost in ugly fashion to both Philadelphia and Miami. This game will not only be a test to see if Pittsburgh can be a playoff contender, but it is also a test for the Cowboys and their defense. In fact, this is undoubtedly their biggest test defensively as they go against one of the most high-powered offenses in the league with Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown on the opposite side of the field. I expect Dallas to give plenty of attention to Pittsburgh’s two most dangerous weapons in Bell and Brown, and as a result, Sammie Coates will have a big day with at least one deep touchdown. However, the momentum for these teams couldn’t be going in a more opposite direction. The Cowboys are coming off from one of their most impressive wins of the season , while the Steelers are coming off from one of their ugliest losses of the season. There is a chance for a sneaky Pittsburgh comeback game, but Dallas is rolling like a freight train right now on the back of Ezekiel Elliott. Cowboys 31, Steelers 21