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Gore is likely to play a big part for Colts

Colt's Frank Gore stretches out the ball
1 of 1

NFL
Sky Sports 1, 1.30am Friday

The likely absence of Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck has provoked a huge shift in the handicap for tonight’s late game as Pittsburgh have shifted from 2.5 to eight-point favourites.

There is a decent chance that the impact of one player has been exaggerated, but the line is likely to continue to shift towards the Steelers before kick-off.

The problem for the Colts is that it is difficult to be confident about back-up Scott Tolzien, who has just two indifferent appearances for Green Bay to his name.

And he has had little time to get used to the idea that he may be playing in front of a bumper holiday TV audience as it is just a few days since Luck suffered his head injury in the Colts’ victory over Tennessee.

The Steelers have an excellent offence. Ben Roethlisberger is right up there with the best quarterbacks in the league while running back Le’Veon Bell and receiver Antonio Brown are held in a similar regard.

But anyone looking to smash into Pittsburgh in the light of Luck’s likely absence should remember they have beaten only winless Cleveland in their last five matches.

They are not firing on all cylinders and, of course, NFL teams don’t play to cover handicaps. They just want to win matches.

A safer course will be to back veteran Colts running back Frank Gore to score a touchdown. He is likely to have to shoulder much of the offensive burden for the home team and has gone over seven times this season.

Recommendation
F Gore to score a touchdown
1pt 13-8 bet365


The lowdown

Venue Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, Indiana
Surface Artificial
Weather Indoors
Best handicaps Pittsburgh -7.5; Indianapolis +8
Points line 46.5-48 points

Team news
Pittsburgh Running back DeAngelo Williams is still out with a knee injury. Wide receiver Markus Wheaton and defensive end Cameron Heyward are ruled out long term.
Indianapolis Quarterback Andrew Luck suffered concussion in Sunday’s win over Tennessee and is highly unlikely to play. Safety Clayton Geathers has the same issue while cornerback Vontae Davis is questionable with an ankle injury.

Key stat
The points total has gone under the line in eight of Pittsburgh’s last nine away matches

The problem for the Colts is that it is difficult to be confident about back-up Scott Tolzien, who has just two indifferent appearances for Green Bay to his name
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