While we don’t know the order of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ away games yet, we know how many miles they’ll travel. According to a graphic shared by ESPN’s Adam Schefter Wednesday, Pittsburgh will travel more than 16,000 miles in 2023, passing through 20 time zones. Compared to the rest of the NFL, it’s a favorable number, the 12th-fewest miles in the league.
As Schefter’s tweet notes, the Seattle Seahawks will fight jet lag the most this year, travelling 31,600 miles this season. Surprisingly enough, they aren’t even one of the teams playing in one of the five International Games this season. But they’ll make several long trips out east, including AFC North stops to Cincinnati and Baltimore along with treks to New Jersey to play the Giants and Tennessee to face the Titans.
Beyond the Steelers’ standard slate of AFC North teams to travel to this year, Pittsburgh’s away games are against the Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Rams, Seattle Seahawks, and Las Vegas Raiders. The latter three trips are by far the team’s longest and make up the bulk of the 16,525 miles. It also helps that Pittsburgh has only eight road games this year instead of nine, a product of the uneven 17-game schedule.
Comparatively, this is a longer travel itinerary than recent years. In 2022, the Steelers traveled the fewest miles of any team, a little over 6,400 and incredibly, stayed in the Eastern Time Zone all season. The 2021 season was a similar story as well as other seasons over the last decade that kept Pittsburgh well under the 10,000 mile mark.
The team travelling the fewest miles this year is the Cincinnati Bengals at just over 11,000. The Cleveland Browns are in a similar spot while the Baltimore Ravens are a divisional outlier at over 25,000 miles. That’s largely responsible due to the team’s Week 6 trip to Tottenham against the Tennessee Titans.
Of course, the layout of the team’s away games beyond just the miles themselves is an important part of the schedule. A road game after a short week versus one after a bye week have two completely different impacts on the team. The NFL will officially announce the 2023 schedule tomorrow night at 8 PM/EST though there figure to be a handful of leaks ahead of then.