1) The "third receiver" is crucial to the success of the Pittsburgh Steelers; not so much for the volume of production, but when that third wheel is impactful enough to attract attention away from the top two receivers and tight end, together we all eat. Interestingly, Manny Sanders was activated and then called upon at the same time Big Ben came back on board. Sanders caught two third-down passes, just the right impact for that third wheel. Can and will Sanders reach that 400-yard season that would help Hines, Heath and Wallace immensely by spreading out defensive attention?
3) If football games were 56 minutes instead of 60 minutes, the Steelers would be 5-0. Moreover, their opponents would have a total of 28 points scored, a remarkable, even historic, defensive average of only 5 points per game given up. However, in the last 4 minutes of every game (4:09 once), the Steelers have given up 32 points. They give up more points in the last 7 percent of games than in the first 93 percent. This is massive statistical significance. How is this accounted for? Do the Steelers play soft at the end? Or, like 2009, does this defense fold when the opposition is in desperation mode? Two of the five games (Atlanta and Baltimore) were certainly not garbage time.
5) I asked a similar question before and we ended up overwhelmingly with the wrong answer. The Steelers play their next three games on the road. This boggles my mind. No team should ever play more than two in a row at home or on the road. With computers, this is easily done, even at rudimentary levels of sports leagues. Anyhow, I digress. If you could sign a contract right now that the Steelers will go 2-1 over the next three games, would you sign? Keep in mind two things. Disregard the fact that we want to watch football games and not just sign up for future outcomes. I know that, that's why we enjoy the games. That aside, would you take a 6-2 record right now coming home from three road games?