Why this game is intriguing: It was a new world under new leadership for the Raiders this offseason, but the results haven't improved. Two ugly losses make you second-guess the belief that they would compete in the AFC West race. Another loss here to the Steelers might serve as the death blow. Pittsburgh, on the other hand, abused the Jets last week despite missing defensive starters James Harrison and Troy Polamalu. That's how solid the Steelers' defensive core is.
What to watch: Oakland quarterback Carson Palmer has been fine, but he hasn't become the stellar signal-caller some thought he would be in his return to the game. Not yet, at least. Regardless, the Raiders' fortunes truly hinge on running the ball and stopping the run. Darren McFadden has to be better than 2.1 yards per carry. He won't find anything easy against the Steelers.