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Analyzing the Steelers Week 4 win over the Bengals, by the numbers

The Steelers excelled in all three phases in prime time against the Bengals

Cincinatti Bengals v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers were able to get their first win of the 2019 season in decisive fashion against the Cincinnati Bengals at Heinz Field on Monday Night Football. Walking away with a 27-3 victory not only put a tally in the win column, it did a lot for the confidence of players, coaches, and fans to dominate the game in such a way.

Yes, the Bengals were 0-3 going into the game. But all the Steelers can do is play the team they’re matched up against. Additionally, the teams the Baltimore Ravens have beaten do not have a win at this point of the season either, and the only team the Cleveland Browns have defeated who has any wins are the Baltimore Ravens. These are the teams the Steelers are concerned about in the AFC North, and right now they only sit one game back.

Regardless, the Steelers took care of business Monday night. Offense, defense, and special teams all got the job done. While it wasn’t a perfect performance by any means, it was definitely a step n the right direction. So here are some of the numbers which contributed to the Steelers impressive win in Week 4.


The Steelers did a much better job of balancing out the time of possession against the Bengals. Although they fell just short of holding onto the ball longer than their opponant, the Steelers did get within 14 seconds of the 50-50 split. At halftime the Steelers had over 16 minutes of possession, but part of the reason the Bengals caught up was one Steelers drive only took 0:11 to score a touchdown.


This was the most obvious number of the night. The Steelers racked up eight sacks against the Bengals from six different players. The sacks didn’t just come from one location. They came from outside linebackers, inside linebackers, and defensive lineman. It was a great team effort as several times the question wasn’t if the Steelers would get a sack, but who was going to get there first.


The other thing about sacks was the Steelers offense did not surrender a single one. Although they still have problems running the ball up the middle, the offensive line kept Mason Rudolph clean all night.


The Steelers defense held the Cincinnati Bengals to 175 yards of total offense. It helped that the Steelers had 69 yards in sacks pushing the Bengals back. In three of the Bengals nine drives, they had negative yardage before punting.


Between James Conner and Jaylen Samuels , they had 208 yards from scrimmage between their rushes and receptions. So the Steelers top two running back‘s out gained the entire Bengals offense. Each player had 10 rushes and 8 receptions on 8 targets. Conner led the way with 125 yards while Samuels accounted for 81 yards. Additionally, Samuels had three completions for 31 yards since he flipped the ball forward rather than making a handoff in wildcat formation.


Between Mason Rudolph and Jaylen Samuels, they had an 87.1% completion percentage. Samuels had three shovel passes which counted as receptions by James Conner. Looking just at Rudolph’s passing completions, he was 24 of 28 for an 85.7% completion percentage for 229 yards and two touchdowns.


Welcome back Chris Boswell! It was nice to see him knock through the 49 yard field goal, especially when it wasn’t in a super clutch situation. He has yet to miss a kick in 2019 going 7/7 in both field goals and extra points.


One concerning stat which should be noted was the Steelers only had three conversions on third down in Week 4. They’ve only made three conversions on third down in each game so far in 2019. Fortunately for the Steelers, they only had nine opportunities as they were getting first downs on first and second downs. In my opinion, this stat can improve once Rudolph gets the confidence to check out of plays on third down where they are not going to work against the defensive front they are facing.

So there are some numbers to help evaluate the Steelers’ performance against the Bengals. Do these numbers accurately describe what transpired Monday? Were there any other numbers not listed which really stood out to you? Please leave your answers in the comments below.