No offense to Jim Smith, but it seemed baffling to me when I found out last week that he had scored more receiving touchdowns in the first seven games of a season than anybody else in Pittsburgh Steelers history. He is a comparatively obscure name to own that record.
But Antonio Brown tied him last week with his eighth touchdown of the year, and now with his ninth yesterday outright has the most receiving touchdowns in franchise history through the first eight games of a season—which since the mid-70s is the halfway point of the year.
Not only that, he is now tied for the second-longest streak in team history with respect to consecutive games with at least one touchdown. He has recorded at least one touchdown in six straight games and has at least one in seven of the team’s eight games this year.
Nine touchdowns matched his season output from a year ago, but that was the first season in four years in which he failed to reach double digits. He scored 35 touchdowns through the air over the course of the 2014 through 2016 seasons.
As goes without saying, he stands a great chance of reaching double figures again, considering he has potentially eight games to record just one more touchdown. I like his odds of managing to do so over the course of the next two months.
His nine touchdowns this year now give him 68 in his career.. He already passed John Stallworth several games ago for the second-most receiving touchdowns in team history. The only person that he is staring up at is now Hines Ward, who caught 85 touchdowns. Brown is currently 17 away from tying that, a figuring that could potentially be in play for 2019.
Meanwhile, Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones just caught his first touchdown pass of the season.
Back to the Steelers, though, Brown already owns the team record for the most receiving touchdowns in a single season, which is 13. As he is averaging a touchdown per game, he is obviously on pace to break his own record.
If he wants to own the Steelers’ record for the most consecutive games with a receiving touchdown, however, he still has some work to do, as Buddy Dial went nine straight contests hauling one in. Brown would need to keep up his current pace for another three weeks for that.