The Pittsburgh Steelers are winning in a way that no other NFL has done in the past 90 years. Despite being outgained for a ninth straight game, the Steelers made enough plays to record a 23-19 win over the Packers on Sunday.
Pittsburgh (6-3) is the only team to have a winning record despite being outscored in each of its first nine games since the NFL started keeping track of rushing and receiving stats (h/t ESPN).
The Steelers defeated the Packers despite being outgained, 399-324. They did so by scoring touchdowns on their first two drives, getting three big field goals by Chris Boswell and receiving two end zone picks by safeties Keanu Neal and Damontae Kazee on Green Bay’s last two possessions.
Neal, while getting an assist by Patrick Peterson’s deflection, picked off Jordan Love in the end zone with 3:20 left and the Steelers protecting a four-point lead. Kazee, starting in place of injured starter Minkah Fitzpatrick, sealed the win when he stepped in front of Love’s pass on the game’s final play.
Peterson also came up with a big play in the first half when he blocked a point-after attempt. The block was big in that it forced the Packers to have to score a touchdown late in the game instead of a game-tying field goal.
The Steelers have thrived off forcing turnovers all year. The team’s running game, however, has also started to become part of Pittsburgh’s recipe for success in recent weeks. After rushing for 166 yards in last week’s win over the Titans, the Steelers ran for a whopping 205 yards and two touchdowns on Sunday. Jaylen Warren led the way while recording his first career 100-yard rushing performance.
Najee Harris complemented Warren’s 101 yards and a score with 82 rushing yards of his own that included a four-yard touchdown run on the game’s opening drive. Pittsburgh’s recent success on the ground can be attributed to more runs out of the shotgun and rookie first-round pick Broderick Jones’ addition into the starting lineup.
Pittsburgh didn’t receive gaudy numbers by Kenny Pickett, but the Steelers quarterback still found ways to contribute to the cause. Trailing 19-17 late in the third quarter, his 28-yard completion to George Pickens set up Boswell’s game-winning field goal.
The win kept the Steelers within striking distance of the Ravens for first place in the AFC North. It also increased Pittsburgh’s odds at making it back to the playoffs while also securing Mike Tomlin’s 17th consecutive non-losing season.