The Pittsburgh Steelers will host the Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday at Heinz Field and with it now being the month of October, odds are good they’ll notch their four win of the season this weekend.
During his long career, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has a 20-1 record at home in the month of October with his lone loss coming in 2008 to the New York Giants. In case you forgot, that was the game that Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison was used as an emergency long snapper and you should probably remember the rest of the story from there.
While Roethlisberger does indeed own a very impressive career home record during the month of October, it’s worth noting that he’s only thrown for more than 300 yards in just 6 of those previous 21 games. In fact, he’s averaging just shy of 260 passing yards per game in October home games during his career.
Roethlisberger’s single-best passing game, however, came in an October home game against the Indianapolis Colts just a few years. In that 51-34 2014 win over the Colts Roethlisberger set career-highs in single-game passing yards (522) and single-game touchdown passes (6).
For his career in October home games, Roethlisberger has thrown 48 total touchdown passes and just 10 interceptions. Additionally, four of those 10 interceptions came in the aforementioned 2008 loss to the Giants. In 14 of the other 20 games, Roethlisberger didn’t throw a single interception. He’s also thrown at least one touchdown pass in those previous 21 home October games.
During his Wednesday session with the media, Roethlisberger was reminded that he’s played well during his career in the month of October (33-11 record). He was then asked if the month of September is sometimes considered a sputtering month for him and the rest of the offense.
“Well, it’s a feeling out and especially when you’ve got, on offense, when you’ve got Le’Veon [Bell] coming back, not being there early, Martavis [Bryant] not here all last year, new guys, JuJu [Smith-Schuster] and stuff like that,” Roethlisberger said. “And so, September’s kind of a feeling-out process. You use the boxing analogy, you’re just jabbing around, dancing around, feeling your opponent out and your team out and now you kind of have an understanding where you are and where you want to get to. Now it’s time you got to start playing some really good football.”
The Steelers defense will face Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles on Sunday and in case you’re curious, he enters the game with a career October road record of 1-5. Bortles did, however, averaged nearly 281 yards passing in those six games that included him throwing 11 touchdown passes and 4 interceptions.
The Steelers opened the week as 9-point home favorites over the Jaguars.