Steelers vs. Jets: LeBeau 15-2 against rookie quarterbacks

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

It's a stat Jets rookie QB Geno Smith is likely to hear a few times leading into Week 6; Dick LeBeau rarely loses to rookie quarterbacks. His pocket presence outweighs his mobility, and getting that 16th win will be tough.

It's such an interesting stat to read; Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is 15-2 against rookie quarterbacks in his time as the Steelers' defensive coordinator.

The only two? A throwaway Week 17 game against Baltimore and Troy Smith in 2007. The Steelers sat many of their starters, as the result of the game would have no effect on their division title or hosting the Jacksonville Jaguars the next week in the AFC Wild Card round.

The other was last season, against Cleveland's Brandon Weeden - a game in which Charlie Batch started, the Steelers' defense got a touchdown and the offense turned the ball over eight times.

EIGHT times.

Despite holding a significant time of possession advantage, the Browns managed to pile up 238 total yards, and Weeden was sacked four times.

The Steelers defense played winning football. The offense...struggled a bit.

Geno Smith, the defending AFC Offensive Player of the Week, leads the Jets' resurgence this season in a very streaky way. The Jets have 11 turnovers in their last three games, which should be heard as music in the ears of a Steelers' defense smack dab in a turnover drought of biblical proportions. No team has ever failed to log a takeaway in its first five games of a season, according to Elias Sports Bureau.

The Steelers are sitting on four games now. Incidentally, their last takeaway was a strip-sack by Lawrence Timmons against Cleveland in the final game of 2012. That fumble was recovered by Ziggy Hood, who will not start this weekend.

Rookie quarterbacks have thrown 19 interceptions in those 17 games against LeBeau. Smith was impressive against Atlanta in a hostile road primetime environment, but the confusion LeBeau's defense creates (or has created) is difficult for a rookie passer - especially in just his fifth start. Weeden, to his credit, had made 10 starts prior to the Steelers' turnover fest.

Smith is a decent passer and has mobility to make plays with his feet when he has to. It will create a difficult task for the Steelers' defense, but one history shows they can handle.

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