In an indication of the kind of season the Buffalo Bills are having in 2019, they will make their first appearance on NBC’s Sunday Night Football since 2007 on December 15, according to The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.
Coming into the prime-time showdown, a win over the Pittsburgh Steelers clinches Buffalo’s second playoff berth in three seasons — and gives them a legitimate shot at unseating the New England Patriots atop the AFC East.
For the Steelers, a win would bump them up to the fifth seed in the AFC, while dropping Buffalo into sixth by virtue of a tiebreaker, according to SB Nation. But even if the Steelers lose on Sunday night, the playoffs are still very much in the picture. However, they would need wins in their final two games to guarantee a spot.
A Week 16 matchup against the New York Jets appears a likely win for Mike Tomlin’s squad. But their final game of the season pits the Steelers against the Baltimore Ravens, who crushed the Jets on Sunday to extend their NFL-best record to 12-2 and win their franchise-record 10th straight game. The Ravens have already wrapped up the AFC North title, and with one more win in their final two games will clinch the top seed in the conference for the postseason.
Watch a preview of the Buffalo Bills vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday Night Football matchup in the video below, courtesy of ESPN.
Playing at home, Pittsburgh enters the game as slight, two-point favorites over the Bills, according to Sports Illustrated. But the Bills sport a solid 5-1 road record, and 5-0-1 against the point spread.
Overall, the Steelers have a 7-4-2 record against the spread on the season.
Pittsburgh also comes in as the hotter team, with three straight wins and seven of their last eight, following an injury-plagued start that saw them win only one of their first five.
The turnaround has been especially impressive, given that the Steelers lost their future Hall of Fame quarterback Ben Roethlisberger midway through their second game of the season. An elbow injury — the nature of which the Steelers have yet to specify — quickly ruled the 37-year-old, 16-year veteran out for the season.
Mason Rudolph, a third-round pick in 2018 out of Oklahoma State, proved problematic under center, and for the last three games — and likely again on Sunday — the Steelers have put 2019 undrafted rookie quarterback Devlin Hodges in charge of the offense. Last week against the Arizona Cardinals, Hodges posted a 117.5 quarterback rating, completing 16 of 19 attempts for 152 yards and a touchdown in the team’s 23-17 road win.