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20-13 Steelers. Here's why . . .

The Falcons will come out throwing, hoping to negate the pass rush. Look for three step drops, quick passes. The Steelers counter by doubling Roddy White and daring Brian Finneran and Harry Douglas to make plays. The first play on offense will be a pass to to Gonzalez, so he can get that whole 1,000th catch thing out of the way. Turner the Burner will get his touches via the passing game as well, with some rushing attempts sprinkled in. Even though the Falcons are 13-1 when Turner carries the ball 22 or more times a game, I just don't think Mike Mularkey wants to base his strategy on establishing a running game against the Steelers. If that turns out to be their strategy, and it is successful, the Falcons win going away. However, knowing it is difficult to establish the running game against the Steelers and third and long plays right into the LeBeau's hands, I predict the Falcons will try pass to set up the run. The quick pass strategy will result in some success, but not enough to overcome the zone blitz scheme that Ryan hasn't seen before. Some drives end in field goal attempts with Bryant missing a couple in the Heinz Field Goal Deadzone. He'll make a couple of shorter ones. Ryan wasn't particularly sharp in the preseason, going just 24 for 45 with one TD and one interception. He'll be confused in some situations and I think he'll try and force the ball a few times. Count on him rolling out by design which will play into the Steelers' hands. Woodley is going to have a big day. The defense as whole plays well, as they're playing with an extra sense of urgency because of Roethlisberger's absence and the desire to please their newly inducted Hall of Fame coach.

So many pundits have said the Steelers will run more than usual this week because Dixon is starting, but listening to Tomlin and Arians, I don't think that will be the case. I think Mendenhall and others will get their fair share of carries, but Dixon feels comfortable throwing and I think we'll see him have success against a mediocre Falcon secondary. Mike Wallace matches up very well against a gimpy Dunta Robinson. Look for a long pass to Wallace early to test Robinson. Hines Ward will be Dixon's security blanket; he'll find ways to move the chains. Dixon may run for 50 yards or more himself by scrambling when the pass protection breaks down. Look for a reverse or two and some sort of gadget play involving Randle El. There will be mistakes, sensless penalties and other frustrations, but overall, I think Dixon is going to be effective enough to allow the Steelers to score enough points to win.

I don't know if the Steelers special teams will be better, but can they be worse? I have to believe the kick and punt coverage teams will tackle better. I don't foresee the Falcons scoring on a return.

The game won't be as close as the 7-pont margin would otherwise indicate. Dixon manages the game and adds a little bit extra, and the defense holds Matty Ice and Turner the Burner in check.

20-13 Steelers as the Steeler Nation breathes a collective sigh of relief.

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I think score will be 17-14 falcons. And Kroy BEERman gets 2.5 sacks and 1 FF.

Jerry 1 sack 2 tackles for loss Turner rushes for 134 yards BEERman gets 2sacks JA98 1 tackle for a loss Matty Ice Throws for 3 Touchdowns. Ryan spreads the ball around Roddy 1 TD TG 1 TD and Finn 1 TD ABE gets 2.5 sacks. Falcons 27-7 GO FALCONS!!!!!

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20-13 Steelers. Here's why . . .

The Falcons will come out throwing, hoping to negate the pass rush. Look for three step drops, quick passes. The Steelers counter by doubling Roddy White and daring Brian Finneran and Harry Douglas to make plays. The first play on offense will be a pass to to Gonzalez, so he can get that whole 1,000th catch thing out of the way. Turner the Burner will get his touches via the passing game as well, with some rushing attempts sprinkled in. Even though the Falcons are 13-1 when Turner carries the ball 22 or more times a game, I just don't think Mike Mularkey wants to base his strategy on establishing a running game against the Steelers. If that turns out to be their strategy, and it is successful, the Falcons win going away. However, knowing it is difficult to establish the running game against the Steelers and third and long plays right into the LeBeau's hands, I predict the Falcons will try pass to set up the run. The quick pass strategy will result in some success, but not enough to overcome the zone blitz scheme that Ryan hasn't seen before. Some drives end in field goal attempts with Bryant missing a couple in the Heinz Field Goal Deadzone. He'll make a couple of shorter ones. Ryan wasn't particularly sharp in the preseason, going just 24 for 45 with one TD and one interception. He'll be confused in some situations and I think he'll try and force the ball a few times. Count on him rolling out by design which will play into the Steelers' hands. Woodley is going to have a big day. The defense as whole plays well, as they're playing with an extra sense of urgency because of Roethlisberger's absence and the desire to please their newly inducted Hall of Fame coach.

So many pundits have said the Steelers will run more than usual this week because Dixon is starting, but listening to Tomlin and Arians, I don't think that will be the case. I think Mendenhall and others will get their fair share of carries, but Dixon feels comfortable throwing and I think we'll see him have success against a mediocre Falcon secondary. Mike Wallace matches up very well against a gimpy Dunta Robinson. Look for a long pass to Wallace early to test Robinson. Hines Ward will be Dixon's security blanket; he'll find ways to move the chains. Dixon may run for 50 yards or more himself by scrambling when the pass protection breaks down. Look for a reverse or two and some sort of gadget play involving Randle El. There will be mistakes, sensless penalties and other frustrations, but overall, I think Dixon is going to be effective enough to allow the Steelers to score enough points to win.

Dixon makes a lot of mistakes especially while throwing on the run, Look at a lot of his college film and you see that he has a huge tendency to throw back across his body while scrambling and he still does it. Our Run D is to stout for Medenhall to break and Dixon just doesn't make to many good decisions, our offense under burner and snelling wille work the first 2 quarters breaking your D down and we'll come out firing on all cylinders in the 2nd half while your D is battered and nearly broken from repeated abuse, expect Snelling to get 11 touches and Turner 26. Ryan will make 18 pass Attempts with 10 Completion 2 Tds and 1 Int, Turner gets 1 Td as well and Bryant knock 2 through the up rights. The Steeler D will force 2 turnovers and will captilize and score twice and add a FG from one of thier other drives

Final Score 27-17. A Banged up steeler team just can't handle a high powered offense hitting them as hard as they can.

I don't know if the Steelers special teams will be better, but can they be worse? I have to believe the kick and punt coverage teams will tackle better. I don't foresee the Falcons scoring on a return.

The game won't be as close as the 7-pont margin would otherwise indicate. Dixon manages the game and adds a little bit extra, and the defense holds Matty Ice and Turner the Burner in check.

20-13 Steelers as the Steeler Nation breathes a collective sigh of relief.

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20-13 Steelers. Here's why . . .

The Falcons will come out throwing, hoping to negate the pass rush. Look for three step drops, quick passes. The Steelers counter by doubling Roddy White and daring Brian Finneran and Harry Douglas to make plays. The first play on offense will be a pass to to Gonzalez, so he can get that whole 1,000th catch thing out of the way. Turner the Burner will get his touches via the passing game as well, with some rushing attempts sprinkled in. Even though the Falcons are 13-1 when Turner carries the ball 22 or more times a game, I just don't think Mike Mularkey wants to base his strategy on establishing a running game against the Steelers. If that turns out to be their strategy, and it is successful, the Falcons win going away. However, knowing it is difficult to establish the running game against the Steelers and third and long plays right into the LeBeau's hands, I predict the Falcons will try pass to set up the run. The quick pass strategy will result in some success, but not enough to overcome the zone blitz scheme that Ryan hasn't seen before. Some drives end in field goal attempts with Bryant missing a couple in the Heinz Field Goal Deadzone. He'll make a couple of shorter ones. Ryan wasn't particularly sharp in the preseason, going just 24 for 45 with one TD and one interception. He'll be confused in some situations and I think he'll try and force the ball a few times. Count on him rolling out by design which will play into the Steelers' hands. Woodley is going to have a big day. The defense as whole plays well, as they're playing with an extra sense of urgency because of Roethlisberger's absence and the desire to please their newly inducted Hall of Fame coach.

So many pundits have said the Steelers will run more than usual this week because Dixon is starting, but listening to Tomlin and Arians, I don't think that will be the case. I think Mendenhall and others will get their fair share of carries, but Dixon feels comfortable throwing and I think we'll see him have success against a mediocre Falcon secondary. Mike Wallace matches up very well against a gimpy Dunta Robinson. Look for a long pass to Wallace early to test Robinson. Hines Ward will be Dixon's security blanket; he'll find ways to move the chains. Dixon may run for 50 yards or more himself by scrambling when the pass protection breaks down. Look for a reverse or two and some sort of gadget play involving Randle El. There will be mistakes, sensless penalties and other frustrations, but overall, I think Dixon is going to be effective enough to allow the Steelers to score enough points to win.

Dixon makes a lot of mistakes especially while throwing on the run, Look at a lot of his college film and you see that he has a huge tendency to throw back across his body while scrambling and he still does it. Our Run D is to stout for Medenhall to break and Dixon just doesn't make to many good decisions, our offense under burner and snelling wille work the first 2 quarters breaking your D down and we'll come out firing on all cylinders in the 2nd half while your D is battered and nearly broken from repeated abuse, expect Snelling to get 11 touches and Turner 26. Ryan will make 18 pass Attempts with 10 Completion 2 Tds and 1 Int, Turner gets 1 Td as well and Bryant knock 2 through the up rights. The Steeler D will force 2 turnovers and will captilize and score twice and add a FG from one of thier other drives

Final Score 27-17. A Banged up steeler team just can't handle a high powered offense hitting them as hard as they can.

I don't know if the Steelers special teams will be better, but can they be worse? I have to believe the kick and punt coverage teams will tackle better. I don't foresee the Falcons scoring on a return.

The game won't be as close as the 7-pont margin would otherwise indicate. Dixon manages the game and adds a little bit extra, and the defense holds Matty Ice and Turner the Burner in check.

20-13 Steelers as the Steeler Nation breathes a collective sigh of relief.

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