Steelers versus Chargers Preview & Prediction

The Steelers look to freeze out the San Diego Chargers today in Pittsburgh. The Steelers look to spark the running game with the return of starting running back Willie Parker, who has been sidelined with a shoulder injury. Parker will be wearing a shoulder brace as he recovers from a shoulder subluxation. The offensive line has been vocal about wanting to run the ball more. The Chargers defense has been giving up an average of 103.1 yards a game, but have only allowed 6 rushing touchdowns. The Chargers however are ranked last in passing defense, giving up 264.9 yards a game. The Steelers will have to balance the run to set up the pass. Starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger needs to rebound from a poor Colts game last week and get the ball out quick to avoid pocket pressure and he has to make smarter decisions in the passing game. Rookie wide receiver Limas Sweed looks to get in on four receiver sets after the release of wide receiver Dallas Baker on Saturday.

On defense the Steelers will be sparked by the return of linebacker LaMarr Woodley who sat out last week with a calf injury. Woodley is still not 100%, but should make an impact regardless against an offense that has given up only 12 sacks all season. Chargers wide receiver Chris Chambers is rounding back into shape after an ankle injury and looks to return today against the Steelers. The Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson and tight end Antonio Gates are big play makers and require constant attention from the defense. The Steelers will look to rotate in several defensive backs in a banged up secondary.

The Chargers are 1-5 in their last 6 games on the road and 1-9 SU in its last 10 games when playing on the road against Pittsburgh. The Steelers 5-1 in their last 6 games when playing San Diego. The cold weather will play a factor in this game and should prove to be a lower scoring game.

Predisction: Steelers 20 Chargers 16

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