The 2021 Pittsburgh Steelers have had an up-and-down season. After reaching what is hopefully the lowest of the low in Week 12 against the Cincinnati Bengals, the Steelers came back to Heinz Field and took down the division-leading Ravens at home by a score of 20–19. It was an emotional game in which the Steelers trailed almost the entire time. But what was most important is that Pittsburgh came out ahead on the scoreboard when the clock hit triple zeros.
So without further ado, here are some of the numbers involved in the Steelers win over the Ravens.
I almost put the number seven here, as it is the Steelers “seven shots” drill that they run at every practice which really helped them in the final minutes of the game. On the two separate two-point conversions, one run by each team, the Steelers offense was able to get the job done with Ben Roethlisberger completing the pass to Pat Freiermuth for the score, and the defense was able to hold the Ravens on their attempted game-winning conversion. While some believe the Ravens simply didn’t execute the play, T.J. Watt was in the face of Lamar Jackson to disrupt the throw which ultimately fell incomplete.
Another important factor in this game was the Steelers coming out on the right side of the turnover margin. With Minkah Fitzpatrick giving an interception in the end zone to stop the Ravens first drive, the Steelers took care of the ball the entire game and did not have a turnover.
Although the Steelers only ended up with 85 rushing yards on 25 attempts, the running game came through for them when they needed it the most. In the fourth quarter, the Steelers ran the ball 13 times for 48 yards with a 3.69 yards per rush average. For comparison sake, the Ravens only had two fourth-quarter rushes for 4 yards.
Speaking of fourth quarter statistics, the Pittsburgh Steelers completed 90% of their passes in the fourth quarter with Ben Roethlisberger going 9 of 10 for 129 yards, two touchdowns, and the aforementioned two-point conversion. The only incompletion the Steelers had in the fourth quarter was the third and eight pass on the Ravens 25-yard line which Roethlisberger threw deep to the right side to James Washington for his only target of the game and ultimately lead to Chris Boswell‘s 43-yard field goal.
The Steelers were able to get t0 quarterback Lamar Jackson throughout the game on Sunday. Notching seven sacks as a team, the Steelers also had a total of 10 quarterback hits. The sack breakdown came with one for Cameron Heyward, 2.5 for Chris Wormley against his former team, and 3.5 for T.J. Watt who just came off the Reserve/COVID-19 List on Saturday. Watt now has 16 sacks on the season and has moved into the NFL lead and has him tied for the Steelers single-season record with James Harrison from 2008.
On the other side of the ball, the Pittsburgh Steelers did a great job of protecting Ben Roethlisberger as he was only sacked once in the game. Not only was there only one sack, it was on a play in which Rothlisberger kept the ball on a run–pass option but the receiver was not ready for the pass. Roethlisberger wisely took the ball and dove forward to the line of scrimmage to not take a loss. Because he did not gain any yardage on the play, it went down as a sack for the Ravens and also counted as one of their three quarterback hits.
After dropping a touchdown pass in the first half, Diontae Johnson did not let it rattle him as he finished the game with eight receptions on 11 targets for 105 yards and two touchdowns.
Taking on the second-leading rushing team in the NFL going into the week, the Steelers held the Ravens to 107 rushing yards. Leading the way for Baltimore was Lamar Jackson with 55 rushing yards on eight attempts followed by Devonta Freeman with 52 yards on 14 attempts. Latavius Murray Nate McCrary combined for no yards on three attempts. What was even more impressive was that the Steelers in the second half held the Ravens to only 21 yards on the ground on eight attempts which comes to a 2.6 yards per carry average.
After highlighting how many consecutive games the Steelers had lost in which Joe Haden did not appear, the Steelers finally got back to a streak on the right side where they have now one one game with Haden on the sidelines. This victory snaps the eight game losing scared they had when Haden was unavailable.
This is my favorite number. Although I could say it was the one additional point that the Steelers had in order to secure the victory, this is all about putting a one in the win column.
So there are some numbers to try to help put the Steelers Week 13 win over the Ravens in perspective. While it was not a perfect performance to say the least, the Steelers did what they needed to do to keep the game within reach and ultimately bring home the victory. Unfortunately they don’t have much time to enjoy this one as they prepare to travel to Minnesota to take on the Viking on Thursday Night Football.
So what numbers from Sunday’s game stand out to you? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.