These articles are always a lot more fun after a one, even a less-than-stellar one like today’s 21-18 victory over the Cleveland Browns. For the first time this year, let’s get weird.
– T.J. Watt with a record setting day. For the record, sacks became an official stat in 1982.
He is the first Steeler in team history with two sacks in his NFL debut.
He is the first Steeler in team history with a sack and an INT in his NFL debut.
He is the first Steeler since Scott Shields – and the first linebacker ever – with an interception in his debut.
In the entire NFL, the last two players to have a sack and INT in their NFL debut? The Chargers’ Kyle Emanuel in 2015 and…of all people, L.J. Fort in 2012, when he was a member of the Browns.
Watt stands alone as the first to have two sacks in a game to go along with a pick.
– Antonio Brown had the second most receiving yards in a Week One for a Steelers’ receiver. Finished with 182. Louis Lipps edged him out with 183 back in 1984.
– The Steelers defense has sacked the Browns 31 times over their last five games, dating back to the 2015 season. Had seven today for a loss of 42 yards.
Last time the Steelers had that many sacks in a Week one game? 1990…against the Cleveland Browns. For a loss of 42 yards. The same as today. WEIRD!
The other two times Pittsburgh had seven sacks in their debut, they lost both games.
– Jesse James had two receiving touchdowns today. Last time a Steelers’ TE did that was Heath Miller in September of 2012.
– Outside of Antonio Brown, Steelers’ receivers caught a combined four passes for 25 yards. That’s it.
– In the Mike Tomlin era, when Pittsburgh wins Week One, they’ve finished the year with 10+ wins five of six times. Four times, they’ve won at least 11.
– In their last two meetings against the Browns, they’ve combined for one rushing first down. Granted, Le’Veon Bell didn’t play in the Week 17 matchup a year ago.
It’s now the third time since 2007 the team had just one (or zero) rushing first downs in a game. They went from 1999 to 2006 with it never happening.
– And finally, a sloppy game for the Steelers. 13 penalties. Last time they did that in an opener was 2002, the only other time it’s happened in franchise history.