Steelers Week 12 Offensive Charting Notes


The Pittsburgh Steelers had a pretty solid day offensively last week against the Indianapolis Colts, scoring four touchdowns in the process and generally moving the ball effectively. They only ran 50 non-penalty snaps on offense throughout the game, and while that was partly because the Colts had some extended drives, they were also generally efficient.

  • Personnel formations:
    • 11: 25/54 (46.3%)
    • 12: 9/54 (16.7%)
    • 13: 5/54 (9.3%)
    • 21: 3/54 (5.6%)
    • 22: 12/54 (22.2%)
  • As I talked about earlier in the week, the Steelers relied a lot on run formations against the Colts. They spent less than half of the game with three receivers on the field. I checked, and that is only the third time that has happened this season. They also did that on Sunday against the Browns, as well as earlier in the year in Le’Veon Bell’s first game back against the Chiefs.
  • Also, that’s right, folks, fullback Roosevelt Nix was on the field for over a quarter of the snaps. He actually played 14 snaps in the game, as David Johnson also took one snap from the halfback position.
  • As I noted in the intro, the Steelers were pretty efficient on Thursday. Not only did they have healthy averages on rushes and pass attempts, they also had five passing plays of 30 yards or more. That was the most of any game this season.
  • While Bell did get seven snaps’ worth of rest, it should be pointed out that that includes the five snaps after they pulled their primary offensive players. Likewise, five of Sammie Coates’ 10 snaps were at the end of the game. He was targeted on three of his five meaningful snaps.
  • All but two of Chris Hubbard’s 17 snaps were running plays. Excluding a 21-yard run that was negated by a hold, on 14 runs, the Steelers picked up 78 yards with him on the field, averaging 5.6 yards per carry. Similarly for Nix, on 12 carries, they picked up 4.75 yards on the ground.
  • Only two of Ladarius Green’s 14 snaps saw him line up as a wide receiver. He was not targeted on either of those plays. In fact, he had his hand in the dirt pre-snap on both of his receptions, and threw a chip block on one. But only two of his snaps were on running plays. He was the lone tight end on 10 of the snaps.
  • The Steelers are still not using play-action much, just four times against the Colts, but they produced plays of 33 and 35 yards and a touchdown.
  • The Colts did not have a good time blitzing. Not only did they record no sacks, the Steelers completed eight of 10 passes for 133 yards, or 16.6 yards per pass attempt.
  • Average depth of target – 16.6 (This was the deepest of the season by about 25 percent)
    • Antonio Brown – 19.6 (8 targets)
    • Sammie Coates – 32 (3 targets)
    • Eli Rogers – 8.5 (2 targets)
    • Cobi Hamilton – 5 (1 target)
    • Le’Veon Bell – 3.6 (5 targets)
    • Jesse James – 28 (1 target)
    • Ladarius Green – 20 (3 targets)

About the Author

Matthew Marczi
Passionate Steelers fan with a bit of writing ability. Connoisseur of loud music. Follow me on Twitter @mmarczi.
  • CP72

    I was kinda wondering why they have got away from play action a little bit. Ben is a very effective play action guy.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    I was hoping for more 2 TE sets and love it. Let’s hope the running will continue to succeed against better teams. Please that the successful running sets up the passing game. Exactly what I was hoping for and this may be a good formula for winter football and playoffs. We already know how explosive they can be once Coates is full speed after the fingers heel.

    I am using these small,successes to remain very optimistic for a great run.

  • Matthew Marczi

    They have actually been underutilizing it for years. I think they have among the lowest percentages in terms of usage rate in the league. I don’t really get it.