Steelers 2024 schedule: Ranking five must see games, game-by-game predictions,

You’ve made it, Steelers fans. After months of waiting, Pittsburgh has finally received its schedule for the 2024 regular season, a season that Steelers fans are eagerly anticipating for many reasons, including the arrival of nine-time Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson.

Wilson and his teammates have their work cut out for them, as the Steelers have the NFL’s third-toughest schedule based on last year’s results. It doesn’t help that Pittsburgh plays in a division where each team recorded a winning record in 2023. That could very well be the case again this year, especially if Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow and Browns signal caller Deshaun Watson manage to stay healthy.

Below is a complete breakdown of the Steelers’ schedule, including the top-five must-see games, game-by-game predictions, each opponents’ projected over/under win total for 2024 (courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook) as well as Pittsburgh’s complete schedule in its entirely.

Must-see games

1. Week 17 vs. Kansas City Chiefs

Let’s start with the fact that this game is being played on Christmas, which is a good omen for Pittsburgh given their history of playing on Dec. 25. The Steelers are 2-0 on that date, with wins over the Ravens (2016) and Texans (2017).

Steelers fans will try to make things hostile for Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, whose coming out party in the NFL came at the Steelers’ expense back in Week 2 of the 2018 season. This should be a big game as far as playoff scenarios are concerned.

2. Week 12 vs. Browns

The Ravens may have taken some of this matchup’s thunder, but there’s still no love lost when it comes to the Browns and Steelers. This should be a good, old fashioned AFC North game on primetime. Adding to the allure of this game is the one-on-one matchup between T.J. Watt and Myles Garrett for the unofficial title as the NFL’s best defensive player.

3. Week 5 vs. Cowboys

Just from a history standpoint, this is a must-see game. The Steelers and Cowboys have faced each other in a record three Super Bowls, with Pittsburgh winning the first two matchups before Dallas turned the tables in Round 3. History aside, this should be an exciting game between two teams that won a combined 22 games last season. Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott led Dallas to a thrilling win over Pittsburgh during the duo’s only other visit to Pittsburgh back in 2016.

4. Week 7 vs. New York Jets

Aaron Rodgers is this game’s biggest draw, but beyond that, this should be a compelling game between two teams that are looking to move up the AFC’s pecking order. Pittsburgh fans still remember the sting of the Jets’ upset win on the Steelers’ turf back in 2022.

5. Week 2 at Denver Broncos

A lot of the pregame hype will be centered on Russell Wilson’s return to Denver. I’m curious to see how how the Steelers choose to attack rookie quarterback Bo Nix and whether or not the Steelers can reverse their historical bad luck in the Mile High City. Pittsburgh has lost its last four games in Denver, including two playoff games.

Game-by-game predictions

Before we get to my predictions, it’s important to review how the Steelers plan to win games in 2024: by forcing turnovers on defense, running the ball at will on offense and making enough plays in the passing game to secure victory.

To narrow things down further, the success of the 2024 will largely come down to the success of Wilson. Yes, the Steelers will lean on their running game, but Wilson will still have to deliver at various points if Pittsburgh is going to make the playoffs. Wilson has his work cut out for him, as the Steelers currently have a receiving corps that can best be described as unproven.

Week 1: and Atlanta (9.5)

A tough opener, in Atlanta against Kirk Cousins and a talented defense, led by former Bengals safety Jessie Bates III. But I smell an upset here, led by Wilson and a running game and defense that is eager to send a statement to the rest of the league

Record: 1-0

Week 2: at Denver Broncos (6)

The Steelers have historically fared well against rookie quarterbacks, especially under Mike Tomlin. I expect more of the same in Denver against Nix. I also expected another solid game from Wilson against his former team.

Record: 2-0

Week 3: Los Angeles Chargers (9)

Pittsburgh wins its home opener behind a strong running game and a defense that is about to put consistent pressure on Justin Herbert in his first game at Acrisure. New Chargers coach Jim Harbaugh returns to Pittsburgh, 29 years after he came up a Hail Mary short of upsetting the Steelers one game shy of the Super Bowl.

Record: 3-0.

Week 4: at Indianapolis Colts (8.5)

Pittsburgh’s hot start comes in an end in Indianapolis. A big reason why I’m predicting a loss is the versatility of Colts second-year quarterback Anthony Richardson coupled with Jonathan Taylor’s running.

Record: 3-1

Week 5: Dallas Cowboys (10.5) — Sunday night

Pittsburgh’s defense should be able to hold its own against Dallas, offense, but I think the Cowboys’ defense could be the difference, especially if Micah Parsons plays like Micah Parsons. Dictating the game’s tempo (by taking the lead early) and avoiding committing critical turnovers will be key if the Steelers are about to win. But I’m taking the visitors in this one.

Record: 3-2

Week 6: at Las Vegas Raiders (6.5) — Sunday night

This NFL has become a quarterback-driven league, which is a big reason why I’m taking the Steelers, who snap their two-game losing streak. The Steelers should have a decisive QB advantage in this game between Wilson and Raiders passers Gardner Minshew and Aidan O’Connell.

Record: 4-2

Week 7: New York Jets (9.5) — Sunday night

I can see the Steelers winning this game, with Rodgers’ lack of mobility being a big reason why. But I’m taking a more talented Jets team in what can be considered as a measuring stick game for Pittsburgh.

Record: 4-3

Week 8: New York Giants (6.5) — Monday night

After losing to one Big Apple team, the Steelers defeat the other, less talented one. In what will likely be a theme of the 2024 Steelers, expect Pittsburgh to win this game by forcing turnovers and leaning on its running game, led by Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren.

Record: 5-3

Week 10: at Washington Commanders (6.5)

I really like what the Commanders are building under new head coach Dan Quinn. As noted above, the Steelers seldom lose to a rookie quarterback, but something tells me that Jayden Daniels has the tools and the supporting cast to make this a game. That said, I’ll take the Steelers in a game that will be closer than most expect it to be.

Record: 6-3

Week 11: at Baltimore Ravens (11)

Jackson is just 1-3 against the Steelers, who swept their arch rival last year and have won three straight in the series. I see that trend continuing in Week 11, with Harris and Co. spearheading the Steelers’ fourth straight win in Baltimore.

Record: 7-3

Week 12: at Cleveland Browns (8.5) — Thursday night

A lot of people are down on Cleveland. I’m not, especially not with Watson and Nick Chubb healthy and the addition of wideout Jerry Jeudy this past offseason. The Browns win what should be a physical matchup between historical rivals. This being a short week doesn’t help Pittsburgh.

Record: 7-4

Week 13: at Cincinnati Bengals (10.5)

Like Baltimore, Pittsburgh has had success in Cincinnati in recent years. Burrow missed both of Cincinnati’s games against the Steelers in 2023, and his return this season should revive what is usually a spirited matchup. I’ll give the Bengals the nod in the first of two matchups between the two teams.

Record: 7-5

Week 14: Cleveland Browns (8.5)

Like last year, I see the Steelers splitting their matchups against Cleveland, who like Pittsburgh desires to win games this year with a punishing defense and running game.

Record: 8-5

Week 15: at Philadelphia Eagles (10.5)

Anything can happen in the NFL, but I’m highly confident that the Eagles will win this one. The Steelers haven’t won in Philadelphia since 1965, and I don’t see Pittsburgh ending that drought this year.

Record: 8-6

Week 16: at Baltimore Ravens (11)

The Steelers may have to win two of their final three games to clinch a spot in the playoffs. They get off to a good start here against the Ravens, completing a season sweep of Baltimore. As you can tell, I’m not terribly high on Baltimore, who didn’t do much to improve their its this offseason with the exception of signing Derrick Henry.

Record: 9-6

Week 17: Kansas City Chiefs (11.5) — Christmas Day

There are no moral victories in the NFL, but I can foresee a scenario where the Steelers lose to the Chiefs but are still able to create some good vibes by keeping things close until the end. It’s hard picking against the Steelers at home on Christmas, but Mahomes and Co. are too good to pick against here.

Record: 9-7

Week 18: Cincinnati Bengals (10.5)

We’ve got a win and possibly go home matchup between the Steelers and Bengals. Pittsburgh would benefit if the Bengals have nothing to play for. But if they do, the Steelers will have to put their best foot forward. Let’s just say I wouldn’t want to face Burrow with my season on the line.

This game could go either way, but if the Bengals already have a playoff spot sewed up, Pittsburgh could take advantage of a Burrow-less team while possibly punching its own playoff ticket.

Record: 10-7

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