Steelers-Cardinals pregame primer: Keys to victory, bold prediction

PITTSBURGH — This article originally appeared on steelersnow.com

The Steelers will get to do something they haven’t done in a while on Sunday: play a team they’re dramatically better than.

It doesn’t mean it will go smoothly. The 7-4 Steelers are five wins better than the 2-9 Cardinals. The last time that happened was in 2021, when the 5-3 Steelers played the 0-8 Detroit Lions. The teams tied.

KEY TO VICTORY: Shut down James Conner

The Pittsburgh Steelers dominated Joe Mixon last week, despite the Bengals trying to do anything possible to get their running game going to take some pressure off backup quarterback Jake Browning.

The Cardinals are without Michael Wilson and Zach Pascal and Marquise Brown and Trey McBride are expected to be at less than 100%. Arizona dominating the Steelers in the passing game doesn’t even seem plausible.

But the Steelers have had some trouble with some bigger backs, notably A.J. Dillon a few weeks ago with Green Bay, and they’ve been an inconsistent tackling team all season. So they have something to prove against Conner.

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