Analytics is a very popular word in today’s sports world, and rightfully so. Statistics can be very telling in terms of trends and a glimpse of just what could happen based on past experiences.
With the Pittsburgh Steelers having lost back-to-back games heading into their Week 8 bye week, I decided to take a look at Mike Tomlin’s record after losing back-to-back games.
Now, it should be noted how Tomlin has a nifty 6-3 record in the games immediately following an idle week, 8-3 if you include the playoffs. It also should be noted the team has lost the past two seasons after the bye week, but overall the trend has been upward since Tomlin's first three seasons.
The post bye stats are what they are, but how about Tomlin’s ability to prevent a three-game skid, or worse. I looked back at his tenure with the team since 2007.
2007: Lost in Weeks 14 and 15 / Won in Week 16
2008: Didn’t lose two games in a row all season
2009: Lost in Weeks 2 and 3 / Won in Week 4
Lost in Weeks 10 and 11 / Went on legendary 5-game losing streak
2010: Didn’t lose two games in a row all season
2011: Didn’t lose two games in a row all season
2012: Lost in Weeks 11 and 12 / Won in Week 13
Lost in Weeks 14 and 15 / Lost in Week 16 for 3-game losing streak
2013: Lost in Weeks 1 and 2 / Started season on 4-game losing streak
Lost in Weeks 8 and 9 / Won in Week 10
Lost in Weeks 13 and 14 / Won in Week 15
2014: Didn’t lose two games in a row all season
2015: Lost in Weeks 7 and 8 / Won in Week 9
If you do the math, in Tomlin’s tenure with the Pittsburgh Steelers, he has lost back-to-back games 9 times. 6 of those 9 times he won the next game.
Good teams are hard to keep down, and this is certainly the case with the teams Tomlin has directed since taking over in 2007. He has surrounded himself with quality coaches, and the players rebound more often than they don’t to prevent those losing streaks which can absolutely crush a season’s expectations.
The Steelers will face their arch rival Baltimore Ravens in Week 9 at M&T Bank Stadium, and both teams will enter the game with losing streaks. The Steelers two-game skid compared to the 4-game stretch of losses for the Ravens. Only one streak will end after Week 9, and history shows there is a good chance it will be Pittsburgh who snaps their streak.