The 2021 Pittsburgh Steelers but an end to their three-game skid as they got back to their winning ways with a 27-19 victory over the Denver Broncos at Heinz Field on Sunday. The Steelers jumped out to an early lead and held it the entire game, despite things getting much closer at the end. Regardless of how it all played out, the Steelers now have their second win of the season as they only have one game left before their bye week.
So without further ado, here are some of the numbers involved in the Steelers win over the Broncos in Pittsburgh.
For the second-straight week, the Steelers not only scored a touchdown in the first quarter, they did so on the opening drive of the game. The Steelers got started on the right track, this time with a 50-yard touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger to Diontae Johnson.
The Steelers ended the first 30 minutes of the game with the score 17-6. Having an 11-point lead at halftime, it was the first time the Steelers had a lead going into the locker room at the midpoint of a game since Week 13 of last season. It ended a nine-game streak of the Steelers trailing at halftime.
The Steelers offense had a much different look on Sunday, largely in part due to their ability to run the football effectively. The Steelers had 147 rushing yards on 35 carries for a 4.2-yard average, which included one run Ben Roethlisberger kneel down. On the day, Najee Harris ended with 122 rushing yards on 23 carries for a 5.3-yard average. With 35 rushes to 25 passes, the Steelers stuck with the ground game and had their most rushing attempts since their 38-7 win over the Browns in Week 6 of 2020.
The Pittsburgh Steelers won their 18th consecutive game on Sunday in which they rushed for 100 yards or more. The last time the Steelers cracked the century mark in rushing and did not win the game was in Week 1 of the 2018 season where the game ended in a tie against the Browns. Therefore, the Steelers have gone 21-straight games in which they have not lost when rushing for 100 yards or more. Add in the fact the Steelers last game in which this occurred was Week 15 of the 2017 season against the New England Patriots, we all know Jesse James caught that ball and the Steeler should have been victorious. Prior to that loss, the Steelers had gone 12-straight games in which they were victorious when rushing for 100 yards or more dating all the way back to Week 6 of 2016.
Ben Roethlisberger had a nice bounce-back performance in Week 5. Although not perfect and still having a couple balls which could have been intercepted, Roethlisberger only had to throw 25 passes on the day. With 15 completions for 253 yards and two touchdowns, Roethlisberger ended the day with a 120.9 quarterback rating.
Part of the reason the Steelers had such success in Week 5 was the improved play of the offensive line as a collective unit. On the day, Ben Roethlisberger was only hit twice and gave up one sack. Additionally, Roethlisberger had time to look through his progression in the pocket. The Steelers kept All-Pro edge rusher Von Miller in check with only two tackles and no quarterback hits.
The Steelers went over the 20-point threshold for only the second time in 2021, both of which have been victories. When it comes to offensive points scored, putting up 27 points on Sunday is 10 points higher than the offense has managed in any game this season.
In what has become a very telling stat for the Pittsburgh Steelers, they managed to keep an even turnover margin in the game. Although they gave up a fumble in the first quarter which led to a Broncos field-goal, the Steelers were able to get back to even on the next to last play the game when James Pierre intercepted a pass on fourth down to end the Broncos scoring threat.
Another player who stepped up in his limited role on Sunday was rookie punter Pressley Harvin III who had a 59.5 yard punting average. Having only 2 punts on the day, Harvin’s punts had a distance of 63 yards and 56 yards.
The most important number of them all, the Pittsburgh Steelers got their second win of the 2021 NFL season. Rather than focusing on how many wins they will end the season with, the Pittsburgh Steelers need to simply focus on getting their next win each week.
So there are some numbers to help put the Steelers Week 5 win in perspective. While their performance was encouraging, it is more important for the Steelers to build on their win against the Broncos and keep things going in the right direction.
So what numbers from Sunday’s game stand out to you? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.