Numbers Crunch: Steelers vs Ravens

By Alex Kozora

A statistical analysis from the Pittsburgh Steelers 43-23 victory Sunday night over the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field.

Ben Roethlisberger’s stat line the last two weeks need no context: 65/86 (75.6%) 862 yards 12 TDs 0 INTs. His 12 TD passes are an NFL record.

– And perhaps the most mind-blowing stat you could pull from Roethlisberger. His 12 TD passes the last two weeks are more than eleven teams have thrown all season. Incredible.

– Roethlisberger hasn’t thrown an interception in his last 137 attempts.

– He started last night’s game 4/7 for 30 yards and 0 TDs in the first quarter. Meaning he finished the game with a 21/30 for 310 yards and 6 TDs.

– And he and the Steelers’ offense gets to face a New York Jets’ defense with arguably the worst secondary in the league. They’ve given up a league high 24 TD passes this season. Wide receiver Saalim Hakim, a wide receiver, has been forced to play defense at times for the Jets.

– The Steelers have 56 first downs in the last two weeks.

– Pittsburgh has put up 94 points in the last two weeks. The Steelers have only score more points in consecutive weeks one time in franchise history. That came back in Weeks 13-14 of 1966. A 47-28 win over the New York Giants and a 57-33 win over the Atlanta Falcons the following week. For a total of 104 points.

– The Steelers faced a 4th and 39 Sunday night. Pro Football Reference’s stats track that type of data since 1998. From that timeframe, the Steelers have never had a 4th down from that far of a distance. The previous “record” was a 4th and 37 in 2010 against the New England Patriots.

The Steelers 3rd and 33 is the second longest since that span. Only one longer was a 3rd and 34 in September of 2002. Also against the Patriots. Kordell Stewart’s pass for Terence Mathis fell incomplete.

Markus Wheaton and Matt Spaeth had career long receptions Sunday night. 47 and 33, respectively. Each went for touchdowns.

Michael Palmer and Matt Spaeth have each caught a touchdown on their lone reception.

– Following Spaeth’s TD, eight different receivers have caught a TD pass in 2014. There were only seven in 2013.

Antonio Brown was targeted a career high 16 times Sunday night. He never had more than 14 looks previously. He’s been targeted 10+ times the last eight weeks. Only in Week One did he have fewer than double-digit looks (6).

His 144 yards Sunday night leaves him just four yards shy of 1000 on the season. He’s on pace to shatter the team records in receptions, yards, and touchdowns.

– Like last week, if we assume Martavis Bryant never records another catch, he’d be the only receiver in team history to have five touchdowns on ten catches.

In a single season, the closest player to him is Johnny “Blood” McNally, who caught four touchdowns on 10 receptions in 1937.

Again, assuming for the sake of argument Bryant never makes another reception, Bryant would be the quickest to five touchdowns on the fewest receptions by a wide margin. The next player with the fewest receptions and five touchdowns in team history is George Platukis. Playing from 1938 to 1941, he finished his career with five touchdowns on 28 grabs.

– The Steelers have recorded six sacks in the last two games. First time that’s happened all season.  And the first time that’s happened since Weeks 11-12 of 2013.

– The Ravens run game and zone blocking scheme was held to 3.5 YPC Sunday night.

Jason Worilds recorded his first interception since 2005 Sunday night. That was his senior year of high school.

James Harrison had consecutive games with at least two sacks since Weeks Five and Six in 2009. And that was the only other time he’s recorded that feat in his career. Not too bad for a 36 year old who just came out of retirement.

– Sticking with the OLBs. Arthur Moats forced his first fumble since 2011. So you have an OLB with a pick, one with a sack, and one with a FF. The trifecta.

– You’d have to try and track down high school records for the last time Brice McCain had a fumble recovery. Hasn’t happened in his six years in the NFL or his time at Utah. Until last night.

– Couple of negatives from Sunday night.

Le’Veon Bell gets a pass considering the amazing season he’s had but his 58 total yards is the third lowest of his career. Last time he had a worst outing was Week Eight of last year against the Oakland Raiders when he finished with 51.

– Over the last six weeks, LeGarrette Blount is averaging just 3.5 yards per touch. 170 yards on 49 touches.

– The Steelers had their longest kick return of the season Sunday night. It went 29 yards. Extremely disappointing.

– Sunday night marked the first time the Steelers have won at least three games by 17+ points since 2011.

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