Steelers Severely Limited OBJ’s YAC In Win Over Giants

Statically speaking, New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. had a good game Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers as the former first round draft pick caught 10 passes for 100 yards. In fact, when it comes to both of those statistical categories, Beckham exceeded his 2016 per game average.

However, when you watch the tape from Sunday’s game and dig deeper into the stats, you’ll see that Beckham really didn’t have that great of game against the Steelers.

For starters, Beckham only registered one catch for 10 yards in the first half of Sunday’s game against the Steelers. Sure, he had a 15-yard reception wiped out by a holding call, but the fact of the matter is that it didn’t count.

In the second half, Beckham registered 9 receptions for another 90 yards. Two of those receptions, however, came within the final 1:26 of game-time with the Steelers ahead 24-7.

Ahead of Sunday’s game, I wrote this in my weekly 7 keys post:

The Steelers aren’t going to completely shut down Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., but they can limit his YAC (yards after the catch) on Sunday which will really help in the hidden yardage department. 37.3% of Beckham’s receiving yardage this season has come after the catch and he averages 5.2 extra yards after every grab. 4 of Beckham’s 8 touchdown receptions have been from 26 or more yards out with two of those being 66 yards or longer. There was a lot of YAC allowed on those plays and the Steelers defense must keep him in front of them in this game and hopefully out of the end zone as well.

So, how did the Steelers defense ultimately handle Beckham in the YAC department? In a word, fantastic.

On his 10 total receptions, Beckham registered just 13 yards after the catch and 11 of those came on his 1st and 10 reception with 8:22 left in the fourth quarter against a very soft coverage look that included the cornerbacks playing off and two safeties deep.

On Beckham’s other 9 receptions in the game, 7 of them included him being tackled for zero or negative yards after making the catch. In case you’re curious, Steelers rookie cornerback Artie Burns was responsible for 3 of those 7 tackles while rookie safety Sean Davis had one as well. If you’re scoring at home, Beckham averaged just 1.3 of YAC on his 10 receptions against the Steelers.

As a whole, Burns and fellow Steelers cornerback Ross Cockrell did a very good job when it came to each of them covering Beckham on Sunday even though fantasy-wise it might show that they didn’t.



  • stan

    I can’t say enough about how much better the Steelers, are tackling since the early season, particularly Burns and Davis. Both of those rookies have really blossomed before our eyes and the rest of the defense has raised its game too.

    By the way, I saw the ESPN highlights of the game and you would have thought that Beckham was the only player playing that game. I don’t think anyone would take him over any of our big three yet that’s all the anchors could talk about because OBJ did so much moaning and groaning about the officiating during the game. He had a point on a couple of those non-calls but that’s true of every game. AB gets grabbed and checked just as often, yet he doesn’t make the entire game about himself.

  • gdeuce

    Where are all the Carnell Lake bashers now that Davis and Burns have settled into their roles and are executing their assignments?

  • steeltown

    That hold on Timmons, resulting in an easy TD for Jennings, was blatant and ridiculous

  • steeltown

    I think Burns and Cockrell are settling in, they are starting to mesh well together

  • Steel Tippin

    Doesn’t mean he’s good. Could be that we just finally hit on some dbs in the draft. It’s only been what…7 years since that happened?

  • RickM

    It has always been about the players drafted and it always will be. I am not the biggest Lake fan, but when we see DB after DB, other than Lewis, failing here and also failing to make other NFL teams that clearly says it’s the drafting not the positional coach. It’s too early to make any final assessment, but he has been given better calibre players, finally.

  • gdeuce

    He’s finally given some talent to develop, and when Golson comes back next season we will have a nice young secondary to solidify the back end of the D

  • blackandgoldBullion

    Deuce, you make a good point. I will readily admit that the refs missed or let the Steelers DBs get away with a few little tugs or they hit the WR before the ball arrived. That’s fine. It’s better than not even being in the vicinity.

    Also, they are playing tougher, on the edge, you know. If you never get called for penalties once in a while, then you are not playing aggressively. Good for Lake, if he helped them figure it out.

    Personally, I think Buttler deserves some praises as I know he likes to attack. Whereas Tomlin might pull you out of a game if you commit a foul and you were not one of his favourites. So Lake and Butler, I guess.

  • AndyR34

    Rick – this is a most important observation. Crezdon Butler has had a number of opportunities, but outside of him I can’t really remember any draft choice really connecting with another team for any length of time.

  • Disqussant

    I think this is a key storyline of the victory, and perhaps the season. Say what you will about the secondary, but it does a serviceable job containing blue chip wideouts.

  • Disqussant

    Because finally there was an executive decision made to draft DBs early.

  • RickM

    I think Matthew may have raised the point before me, but it’s an important one as you say. You’re sure right about Butler hanging in there. 8 different teams since he was drafted in 2010! He was let go by Detroit in late August. I wonder if that is finally it? Cheers.

  • RickM

    Very, very impressed with the job that the whole secondary did on Sunday. The fears that Beckham or Cruz, or even Sheppard, would burn them for a couple of big plays just never happened. It’s great to see the confidence growing in the rookies, but kudos to everyone back there.

  • k33ger

    well he helped hurt his numbers with that really weird catch where he almost had a first down, and then let himself get pushed back 8 yards and then ran forward a yard, so it ended up being like -7 YAC.

    Steelers did good on OBJ. Eli didn’t try to hit Cruz once though, oddly enough. one dimensional AND one receiver-able? Not gonna win in the NFL.

  • rdjmsr53

    watch a Seattle or Denver defense and then watch a New England or Dallas offense, compare the non calls foe those teams to the Steelers and I bet opinions about the Steelers getting away with penalties will go away.