Very few times in my life can I say the Bengals were the better team and the team with more talent when they played the Steelers. This year, the talent level between these two teams is not even close. On paper, the Bengals talent overwhelms the Steelers, and on paper, this shouldn’t be a close game. Unfortunately for Bengals fans, this game will be played on a football field and in front of the the entire nation on MNF, not on paper.
So, while the Bengals have a clear edge at nearly every position on the field, the Steelers have a clear edge at the 2 most important spots – quarterback and head coach – and advantages at those two spots can (and have many of times) overcome any talent differential (see the last 13 years of Brady and Belichick for a good example).
While the paper matchup says the Bengals should win comfortable, I know better than to go by strictly paper – especially when it involves the Bengals versus the Steelers. Therefore, I see this game closer than it should be, but I still give the Bengals the advantage.
Overall Advantage: Bengals