The Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 season is now about a third of the way over and the Steelers got back on track with an upset win over Tampa Bay. Improving to 2-4, the Steelers still have a lot to do moving forward for the rest of the season. But for now, it’s time to enjoy the victory for a few days before turning the focus to the next opponent.
So without further ado, here are some of the numbers involved in the Steelers win over the Buccaneers.
Starting off with the turnover situation for the game, this zero applies in three ways. The Steelers did not have the advantage in the turnover margin, but they did not turn the ball over on the day. With the Buccaneers not coughing up the ball either, it was very important for the Steelers to play a clean game in this department.
Even though the Steelers allowed the Buccaneers to move the ball deep into their territory several times during the game, Tampa was only able to come away with one touchdown. In all, the Buccaneers had four red zone trips yet only finished one of the drives with six points. They were two occasions where the Buccaneers had a goal-to-go situation and the Steelers kept them out of the end zone. On the other side of the ball, the Steelers were two for three in the red zone and one for one in goal-to-go situations.
With possession downs being an emphasis of Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin, the Steelers held the Buccaneers to only four third down conversion on 14 attempts for a 29% conversion rate for the day. Granted the Buccaneers did convert both of their fourth down attempts, both on their touchdown drive. But the Steelers stepped up in many circumstances and came up with key third-down stops.
After giving up a disappointing field goal to end the first half, the Steelers opened up the second half of play with an 89-yard kickoff return by Steven Sims. Tackled at the 12-yard line, Sims had the longest kickoff return in Steelers history that did not end with a touchdown. Unfortunately, the drive did not end in a touchdown either as the Steelers only gained 6 yards and settled for a short field goal.
With 4:38 remaining in the first half, the clock was running before the Steelers called a time out and kicked a field goal. From that point, both teams had two more possessions before the end of the half. But in the second half, the Steelers got the ball with 4:38 remaining and never gave Tom Brady a chance to come on to the field to win the game. The Steelers ended the game by moving the ball 46 yards on 10 place to run out the clock.
Coming in during the third quarter for an injured Kenny Pickett, Mitch Trubisky completed 4 of 7 passes in the third stanza. But in the fourth quarter, Trubisky had five completions on five attempts for 108 yards and a touchdown. For the quarter, Trubisky had a perfect 158.3 passer rating. Four of the passes were thrown on third down in the fifth was a second-down touchdown pass.
13, 15, & 11
In the fourth quarter, the Steelers were four for four on third down conversion. Of those conversions, three of them were for more than 10 yards. The 14 yard completion to George Pickens on third and 13 started to get Mitch Trubisky in a groove. On the Steelers final drive, they converted both a third and 15 and a third and 11 with passes to Chase Claypool of 17 yards and 26 yards respectively. The other third down conversion in the quarter was the 45 yard completion to Connor Heyward on a free play when the Steelers caught the Buccaneers with too many men on the field and converted the third and six.
The Steelers technically lost the time of possession battle for the game, but it was only by two seconds. With 29:59 for the Steelers and 30:01 for the Buccaneers, it was as even as the teams could get without being perfectly split. The Steelers were losing the time of possession threw three quarters but ended up holding the ball for 1:42 longer than the Buccaneers in the fourth.
A lot has been said about the Buccaneers defense coming into this game, and a big concern for the Steelers was a struggling defense dealing with multiple injuries. On the game, there were a total of nine drives in which a team did not achieve a first down. Four of those drives were the Steelers holding the Buccaneers to a three and out while the other five drives were from the Steelers not getting a first down. One of the drives, the opening one of the second half, didn’t net the Steelers three points after the great kickoff return.
Boy, is it nice to change this number after four straight weeks of staring at a zero. Regardless of the score or anything else, the most important thing is the Pittsburgh Steelers added a one to their win total for the 2022 season. Additionally, the Steelers finally got over the hump and won a game without T.J. Watt in the lineup.
So there are some numbers to help put the Steelers Week 6 win in perspective. Even though the Steelers secondary was missing multiple players, they still found a way to keep the Buccaneers out of the end zone for most of the day.
So what numbers from Sunday’s game stand out to you? Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.