Pittsburgh (10-4) at New England (9-5)
Time: 4 p.m. today, chs. 11, 4.
Line: Patriots by 2.
Vs. spread: Steelers 7-5; Patriots 6-8.
Last week: Steelers beat Broncos, 35-24. Patriots beat Jaguars, 26-20.
Worth watching: Steelers QB Kordell Stewart is the first player in NFL history with 20 passing TDs and 10 rushing TDs in a season. Will injuries sideline Patriots RB Curtis Martin and WR Terry Glenn?
Outlook: New England continued its climb out of midseason lethargy last week with a big victory at Jacksonville and can clinch a playoff spot with a victory. The Steelers are tough as usual, but they haven't proven they can beat a quality team on the road, having lost at Jacksonville, at Kansas City and at Philadelphia.
Notable: Steelers WR Yancey Thigpen leads the AFC with 1,269 receiving yards.
STEELERS: Out: LB Greg Lloyd (ankle infection). Questionable: TE Kirk Botkin (knee); WR Andre Coleman (knee); T Justin Strzelczyk (calf). Probable: RB Jerome Bettis (back); TE Mark Bruener (foot); S Carnell Lake (foot); RB Tim Lester (knee); C-G Jim Sweeney (ankle); DE Mike Vrabel (foot).
PATRIOTS: Out: CB Steve Lofton (hamstring-injured reserve). Questionable: WR Terry Glenn (hamstring); RB Curtis Martin (shoulder); DT Mark Wheeler (hamstring).
Pub Date: 12/13/97