The last time Atlanta played Pittsburgh, Morten Anderson was on the team.

Week 1: Pre-Game Quick Hits

Jonathan Babineaux and Ben Roethlisberger will both miss this one. Advantage: Falcons.

Tony Gonzalez will become the first tight end with 1,000 catches with his first reception on Sunday.

The Falcons gave up a franchise record 645 yards to the Steelers in 2002 in their Week 10 34-34 Tie. In fact, the 645 yards the Steelers rolled up is the most in the NFL since 1990.

The Steelers have averaged 365.6 yards per game in 14 games vs the Falcons. The Falcons have averaged 303.2 against Pittsburgh.

The Falcons are 2-11-1 against the Steelers. They have never won in Pittsburgh and are 0-5-1 in the Steel City.

Average score in all 14 meetings: Steelers 31.2, Falcons 20.4

in Pittsburgh only: Steelers 26.3, Falcons 14.3

The Falcons are 2.5 point favorites.

The Falcons are 2-0 in opening games in the Mike Smith era. They are also 6-1 since 2003 in Week 1 contests.

The Steelers are 7-0 in openers dating back to 2003.

My Thoughts

I have a bad feeling about this one. I see a 27-21 loss. The Steelers are handicapped at quarterback but their defense and running game is intact and this is a big-time game for the Falcons’ new-look secondary. I am rooting for a win, but my NFL analysis hat tells me a close, out-of-conference road loss will be a building block for the rest of the season.

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Tags: Atlanta Falcons NFL Week 1 Pittsburgh Steelers

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