One would think after a 45-10 victory there wouldn't be many negatives for the team who scored 45 points. To be honest, there weren't many, but after the Pittsburgh Steelers rout of the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday Night Football in Week 13, there were certainly areas which could have been better.
Thanks to our friends at Pro Footbball Focus, we take an in-depth look inside the game to identify trends, positive performances as well as negatives which could become trends moving forward.
All five Pittsburgh offensive linemen allowed some form of pressure against the Indianapolis Colts, but none of the five allowed a hit or sack, and none graded negatively for their pass protection. Seems the offense is taking a page out of the defense's "bend-don't-break" mentality.
The Steelers have grown accustomed to moving their best WR around to give him favorable matchups. Antonio Brown made his eight catches on ten targets whilst in the primary coverage of five different Indianapolis defenders, with both touchdowns coming against Vontae Davis.
When unpressured (30 out of 40 dropbacks), Ben Roethlisberger went 18 of 29 for 264 yards and all four touchdowns, a passer rating of 131.3. In 2014, Roethlisberger was the best quarterback against the blitz, seems he is pretty comfortable sitting in the pocket as well.
The development, and pedigree, of David DeCastro should not be understated. DeCastro stood out on the offensive line with a +3.9 grade, mostly thanks to an excellent +2.6 run blocking grade. That marks his sixth straight positive run blocking grade.
The old-man on the defense still has some gas left in the tank. James Harrison rushed the passer just 22 times, but came away with three sacks and two hurries, and he ended the day with a team-high five defensive stops.
William Gay is by far the most dependable DB on the Steelers' roster, but Ross Cockrell is making a name for himself as well. Cockrell was targeted five times vs. the Colts, yet allowed only a pair of seven yard receptions. He notched two pass defenses as well, earning the highest coverage grade (+2.8) for the Steelers.
The team's depth at ILB might be unparalleled in the NFL, and Vince Williams is the perfect example of why. Williams was impressive (+2.2 overall) despite logging just 13 defensive snaps, recording five tackles and two assists.
Brandon Boykin made a difference in the game Sunday night, and he did so just because he was able to get on the field. Boykin more than doubled his snap count in this game, playing 42 snaps. He recorded a pass defense and an interception, and was targeted three times.