Patriots face long odds against Steelers

AccuScore doesn't have much confidence in the New England Patriots against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Of the 14 games this week, AccuScore gives only the Dallas Cowboys (14.3 percent), Carolina Panthers (23.6 percent), St. Louis Rams (28.6 percent), Washington Redskins (35.6 percent) and Cincinnati Bengals (36.1 percent) less chance of winning after simulating each matchup 10,000 times.

You won't often see the Patriots lumped with those teams this year.

The Patriots, after a sloppy loss to the Cleveland Browns, lose 59.2 percent of the time by the average score of a field to the Steelers in AccuScore's simulations.

The Steelers have the NFL's top-rated run defense, holding teams to an average of 58.2 yards a game. If the Patriots run for less than 70 yards, then their chances of victory dwindle to 29 percent. But if the Patriots can average 4.5 yards a carry, then their chances climb to 60 percent.