Steelers Offense Had A Lot Of Success On First Down In Win Over Ravens

The Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Baltimore Ravens 19-16 Sunday at Heinz Field and their ability to move the ball on first down played a big part in it.

When you exclude the kneel down by quarterback Ben Roethlisberger at the end of the first half and the final run by running back Le’Veon Bell which was an attempt to get the football in the middle of the field for the game-winning kick by kicker Shaun Suisham, the offense ran a total of 23 meaningful first down plays for an average gain of 6.09 yards.

Of those 23 plays, 13 were runs and 10 were passes.

The success by the Steelers offense on first down led to the Ravens being unable to really get after Roethlisberger on second and third downs as they had to respect the run first on the way. This of course made life a bit easier for tackles Kelvin Beachum and Guy Whimper, who both played a really good game.

The first down success also resulted in an average third down distance in the game of 4.48 yards and that opened up huge options as far as they play calling went. In fact, the offense ran four out of 12 times on third down not counting the scramble by Roethlisberger in the game and they converted three of those for first downs.

  • steeltown

    Those 1st down stats are AMAZING when compared to how we looked early on, especially against Tennessee and Cincinnati

  • dgh57

    Yes I agree, that success on 1st down will trickle down to success on 3td down and can make life easier for all involved.

  • Johnny Loose

    I took notice yesterday while watching. HUGE difference it makes when you’re not constantly sitting at 3rd and 8 or longer.

  • cencalsteeler

    When Ben gets rid of the ball quick, he makes the olines job a lot easier. Defenses have to stay put and can not stack the box. Quick throws keep safeties and dbs from blitzing. It allows even matchups in the box allowing holes to open up in the run game. Quick throws catch dbs biting, which allows receivers to stretch the field and get open. We are now doing the exact opposite of the first four games.
    The trick plays are brilliant. Defensive coordinators are now having to prepare more and are keeping defenses off balance.
    But, most of all the tenacity that has come to this team in the last several weeks is just awesome. Watching Dwyer jumping up and down, fist pumping, and the level of pushing opponents around rather than being the one being pushed around is just what this team was lacking. Every week this team is going in a positive direction and I really like what I see. Kudos to the coaching staff and the players for making these adjustments and getting back to Steelers football!