Keen for some Monday Night Football? Check out our Steelers @ Bengals preview here.What a great Monday night matchup we have in store this week between two teams who'll be battling for AFC North supremacy all season long. One of these teams will also be 0-2 after this game, so something has got to give. -
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati BengalsWhen and where: Tuesday 17th September, Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio. Coverage: LIVE ESPN 10.40am The Steelers come into this one on the back of a disappointing 16-9 loss to the Tennessee Titans in week 1. They also lost starting center and Pro Bowler Maurkice Pouncey for the season due to a ACL and MCL tear -- a massive loss given their offensive line struggles -- and veteran LB Larry Foote is also out for the year with a ruptured biceps injury. The injury nightmare didn't stop there as RB LaRod Stephens-Howling also tore his ACL and he too is out for the year. QB Ben Roethlisberger was sacked five times against the Titans and the running game was just awful as RB Isaac Redman fumbled twice as the Steelers only managed 31 yards on 15 carries in total, an average of 2.1 yards a carry. With the injury to LaRod Stephens-Howling the Steelers this week brought back RB Jonathan Dwyer in the hope he can provide a much needed spark to the running game. Rookie RB La'Veon Bell is still out with a lisfranc sprain but boy could they do with having him available this week, even though he is untested in the NFL. This just goes to show how desperate the Steelers are offensively. Defensively the Steelers are more likely to perform and keep the Steelers in this game despite the injury to LB Larry Foote. Defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau will need to execute the perfect defensive game plan for this one. As for the Bengals they enter this one after losing a close game in Chicago against a good Bears team. They could have easily come away with a win so they should be confident in their home opener against a struggling Steelers team, despite the fact Pittsburgh have won 10 of the last 11 meetings in Cincinnati. The Bengals were also kept in check when running the football in Week 1 as their leading rusher was BenJarvus Green-Ellis with 25 yards on 14 carries, although in their defence they came up against the usual stingy Bears defense. WR AJ Green was excellent against the Bears in hauling in 9 catches for 162 yards and two touchdowns. Look for him to have a big game again in this one. The Bengals defense should be able to take advantage of the Steelers offensive struggles and things for the Steelers offense could get ugly early. The Bears did a terrific job of containing DT Geno Atkins last week and the Steelers banged up offensive line will need to do the same to give them a chance to move the ball effectively. However Atkins will look for a bounce back performance and should get it in this game as he has registered three sacks and a forced fumble in the last two games against the Steelers. Watch out for: For the Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger will need a big game despite playing behind a leaky offensive line. Look for him to get out of the pocket and make some big plays like we know he can, as he'll be chased out of the pocket all game long by the Bengals' impressive front seven. I also like LB Vontaze Burfict to have another good game for the Bengals. He was very good last week in registering 8 tackles and his first career interception. Look for him to disrupt the Steelers rushing attack all game long. Former Steelers LB James Harrision will also want a big game for obvious reasons, will he get to Ben Roethlisberger? Final word and prediction: This game will be a typically hard-fought AFC North divisional battle between two teams who will not want to start the season 0-2. However it's the Steelers who will start the season 0-2 as they're offensive struggles will continue against a good Bengals defense at home. Bengals to win 21-10. Agree or disagree? Where will you be watching the game? Let us know in the comments below.