The Pittsburgh Steelers are heading to the mile-high city this weekend as they take on the Denver Broncos on the road. While Denver has not been a kind place to the Steelers over the years (more on that later), the Steelers will have a chance to continue their six-game win streak against the 4-6 Broncos. Here are all the numbers you will need to know heading into the Steelers’ road match up against the Broncos.
6 – If there is one man the Steelers should fear tomorrow it is Broncos’ pass rusher Von Miller. The daunted pass rusher already has 10 sacks this season and has recorded a sack in his last five games. Miller has taken down the opposing quarterback six times over the last five games, while also recording nine quarterback hits. The Steelers’ offensive line has been dealt with a slew of injuries at right tackle as Marcus Gilbert is out again and Matt Feiler has been dealing with a pectoral injury. Feiler or rookie offensive lineman Chukwuma Okorafor will have their hands full tomorrow as they look to stop one of the best pass rushers in the NFL today.
9 – Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s numbers against the Broncos are not pretty. The Steelers’ quarterback has a 2-3 regular season record against Denver and has thrown a whopping nine interceptions in those five games. This also includes being sacked 19 times. If you wish to include post season numbers, then Ben has a combined 3-5 record with 16 touchdowns to 10 interceptions and a staggering 29 sacks in eight games. The Steelers will have to keep Roethlisberger clean Sunday as they go up against daunted pass rusher Von Miller.
56.3 – Broncos’ quarterback Case Keenum is not lighting the league up like he was last season as the quarterback has been floating around average for majority of this season. One area that Keenum has struggled statistically this season is his red zone play, as the Broncos’ quarterback has just a 56.3 passer rating in the red zone this season. Keenum has completed just 40% of his passes with five touchdown passes to three interceptions in the red zone. The Steelers’ red zone defense is ranked 13th this season and it will be interesting to see if they will prey on Keenum tomorrow.
127.9 – Running back James Conner had a rough go at the Jaguars’ defense last weekend as he managed just 25 yards on nine carries. The Jaguars played tough in the trenches but some of Conner’s troubles could also be attributed to the Steelers playing from behind all afternoon. The second-year running back will have a prime opportunity to rebound against the Broncos’ 27th ranked run defense. The Broncos have been allowing 127.9 yards rushing per game this season and are giving up 4.7 yards per carry. After a miscue against the Jaguars, Conner will have the chance to get back on track against the vulnerable Broncos’ run defense.
2009 – Denver has brought nothing but tragedy to the Steelers’ hopes and dreams since the turn of the decade as the Steelers have not won in Denver since 2009. The Steelers have lost three straight road games against the Broncos and each one has stung equally. The last meeting, in the 2015 AFC Divisional round, took a turn for the worse when former running back Fitzgerald Toussaint fumbled while in Broncos’ territory. The meeting before came in the 2012 season opener, when Roethlisberger was intercepted by Tracy Porter to cancel any hopes of a Steelers’ comeback. And last but not least, there was the 2011 playoff heroics of Tim Tebow, which still haunts Steelers’ fans to this day.