On Sunday, Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett re-injured his right ankle and will miss a few weeks due to surgery. Mitch Trubisky will take over as the starting quarterback in Pickett’s absence. The Steelers recently let go of their offensive coordinator, Matt Canada, due to subpar play-calling. The team’s current record is 7-5, and they continue to compete for a playoff spot.
The Steelers are facing a rapid turnaround as they prepare to play the New England Patriots on “Thursday Night Football.” The Patriots, who have a 2-10 record, are struggling with their own offensive issues. Despite Pickett’s absence, the Steelers are 7-5 against the point spread (ATS) this season, while the Patriots have the worst betting record in the NFL at 2-10 ATS.
Pickett, who has been dealing with an ongoing ankle injury, aggravated it during Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals. As a result, he decided to undergo tightrope surgery. Although Pickett has not been placed on injured reserve, he will not be playing against the Patriots. This season, Pickett has exited three games due to injuries, and each time, Trubisky, who has a record of 31-24 as a starter in his career, filled in for him.
In the broader context of the AFC, the Steelers, currently in second place in the AFC North with a 7-5 record, are one of four potential playoff teams in the conference that may be starting a backup quarterback in Week 14.
Aside from the Steelers, the other three teams in the AFC North are also vying for wildcard spots. The Steelers have a 52% probability of making the playoffs, according to Upshot, while the Bengals are considered a long shot with less than 1% chance. DraftKings’ NFL futures board lists the Steelers at +3500 odds to win the AFC Championship and +7500 odds to win Super Bowl LVIII.
In the upcoming weeks, the Steelers will face four more challenges to secure a playoff spot. The team has a busy schedule, including games against the Bengals, Colts, Seahawks, and Ravens. Despite Pickett’s injury, the Steelers are still in contention for a playoff spot and will look to Trubisky to maintain their momentum.