Monday Night Football Betting Preview: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Washington Redskins

Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Washington Redskins
Monday, 8/19/13, 8:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Pittsburgh -1
Current Betting Line:  Washington -1
Opening Total:  38
Current Total:  38
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III will continue to sit out the preseason due to last year's knee injury

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III will continue to sit out the preseason due to last year’s knee injury

Pittsburgh suffered a 18-13 setback to the New York Giants as 2.5-point home favorites in its preseason opener Aug. 10, as it lost the statistical battle by 57 yards, while going UNDER the betting total of 36.  The Steelers are searching for a featured running back this season—after using Rashard Mendenhall, Isaac Redman and Jonathan Dwyer during the 2012 campaign.  It’s important to point out that the franchise has suffered just one loss in each NFL preseason since 2007, which can’t be ignored when making your NFL betting picks Monday night.

The Steelers are 3-1 when playing their first exhibition home game under head coach Mike Tomlin, as they look to bounce back from a disappointing 8-8 season a year ago.  Pittsburgh is 5-14-1 against Washington in exhibition matchups, which includes a two-game losing streak in that situation.  Of the previous six preseason meetings in this series—only one has been decided by more than seven points—something to consider when looking over the NFL betting lines for this out-of-conference tilt.

Washington picked up a 22-21 victory over the Tennessee Titans as three-point road underdogs in its opener, as it won the statistical battle by 90 yards, while going OVER the betting total of 35.5.  The Redskins are definitely taking a cautious approach with their roster, with many believing that coach Mike Shanahan is trying to avoid potential criticism of players getting injured due to last year’s situation during the playoffs with quarterback Robert Griffin III.  Nine regulars that could have seen action if it was a regular season game didn’t step on the field.

The Redskins will once again be led by backup signal-caller Kirk Cousins on the offensive end, as he connected on 6 of 7 passes for 52 yards and a touchdown against the Titans.  Washington welcomed back running back Roy Helu Jr., who is trying to win the No. 2 spot on the depth chart behind Alfred Morris, who will likely continue to watch from the sidelines due to the wear and tear that he went through during his rookie campaign.

Sports bettors will likely back the Steelers in this contest, as the Redskins are primarily focused on reaching the regular season with a healthy roster.

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