Now it is the Redskins who must take on the champion Pittsburgh Steelers.

Joe Theismann, who was mugged by what had been an ineffective New Orleans defense, and the Washington offense must make ready to withstand the assaults of a revived Steeler defense that limited the Denver Broncos and Dallas Cowboys to 10 points in six days' time.

In order to have the Reskins make a run at the Steelers, Theismann is going to have to be protected and the suddenly porous Redskin offensive line is going to have to guarantee the advances of John Riggins.

On Defense, Jack Pardee and his staff must prevent the Steelers from constructing a game plan to take full advantage of a suddenly error-prone secondary that hasn't functioned nearly as well as before. And, unless the Redskin linebackers and front line can shut down the inside counters of Franco Harris and Sid Thornton, Terry Bradshaw is going to have the Redskin defense at his mercy when he switches to an aerial attack in which he can choose between Lynn Swann, John Stallworth, Jim Smith, Benny Cunningham and Randy Grossman.

Pittsburgh by 12.

In other games:

Atlanta 1 over Tampa Bay, New England 4 over Buffalo, Dallas 7 over N.Y. Giants, Philadelphia 3 over Cleveland, San Diego 6 over Kansas City, St. Louis 5 over Minnesota, Baltimore 3 over Cinncinnati, Oakland 12 over San Francisco, Seattle 2 over Los Angeles, Chicago 7 over Detroit, N.Y. Jets 4 over Green Bay, Denver 6 over New Orleans, (Monday) Miami 3 over Houston.