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Steelers vs. Patriots: Preview, prediction, statistics to know for AFC showdown

The seemingly annual late-season game between the New England Patriotsand Pittsburgh Steelers has a bit of an interesting twist to it this time around: both teams are coming in off dispiriting losses. Yes, the Pats and Steelers still maintain holds on their respective division leads, but there’s no question that these particular versions of each team are not quite as strong as they’ve been in the past, and that is perhaps exemplified by their records (9-4 for New England, 7-5-1 for Pittsburgh) and their recent play. MORE ON THE NFL

The Patriots are coming off a very un-Patriots-like loss to the Dolphins, which saw Kenyan Drake take the second of two laterals to the house for a 69-yard touchdown as time expired. The Steelers, meanwhile, have lost three-consecutive games (to the BroncosChargers, and Raiders) and they’re lucky it’s not four straight. Either way, this is just the eighth time in Ben Roethlisberger’s 15 years at Pittsburgh’s starter that the Steelers have lost three in a row at any point, and the seventh time they’ve done so where Roethlisberger himself has started all three games. 

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