Pats Open as 6-Point Faves vs. Steelers

AFC Championship: Patriots open as 6-point favorites vs. Steelers 1/22/17

The Patriots will host the Steelers in the 2017 AFC Championship Game and have opened as nearly touchdown favorites for next Sunday's title matchup.

According to oddsmakers from online sports book BetDSI, the Patriots opened as 6-point favorites over the Steelers for next Sunday's AFC title game while the over/under currently sits at 51.5 points. Some sports books list New England as a 5.5-point favorite.

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This will be a rematch of an October 23rd game won by the Patriots 27-16 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. That said, Ben Roethlisberger didn't play in that game due to a knee injury so next weekend's game will be quite different. These two teams also met in September of 2015, a game won by the Patriots 28-21. The last time these two teams met in the postseason was all the way back in 2005 when the Patriots routed the Steelers 41-27 in Pittsburgh.

The Patriots advanced to the title game with a 34-16 win over the Texans on Saturday night as a 16.5-point home favorite. Tom Brady wasn't sharp in the win, as he completed 18-of-38 passes for 287 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. The difference in the game was New England intercepting Houston quarterback Brock Osweiler three times and holding him to just 198 yards on 23-of-40 passing.

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As for the Steelers, they advanced to the AFC Championship Game despite not scoring a touchdown in Sunday's 18-16 victory over the Chiefs. Chris Boswell connected on field goals from 22, 38, 36, 45, 43, and 43 yards, while Pittsburgh's defense held Alex Smith to just 20-fo-34 passing for 172 yards with one touchdown and one interception. 

The game essentially came down to a 2-point conversion attempt after Kansas City scored late in the fourth quarter. The Chiefs converted on the attempt, but left tackle Eric Fisher was flagged for holding and the two points came off the board. Smith's next pass attempt from a longer distance fell incomplete and the Steelers were able to convert one first down in efforts to run out the clock and set up a rematch with the Pats next week.

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