So, who will come out on top and maintain their path to a division title? Lets dig in and find out.
Video: Panthers vs. Steelers Week 10 Highlights | NFL 2018
This matchup will have some juice, and thats thanks to two veteran signal-callers at quarterback that have been fantastic at the position in 2018.
Video: Back-to-Back Steelers TDs w/ JuJus 75-Yarder & Cams Pick 6!
In reviewing the 33 quarterbacks with 150 or more drop backs this year, Cam Newton has been ballin. Peeking at Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) per drop back, Newton checks in seventh with a mark of 0.22, and Ben Roethlisberger isnt too far behind him, ranking ninth (0.21). In terms of Passing Success Rate, or the percentage of drop backs resulting in positive NEP, Newton ranks 10th (51.275) and Roethlisberger slides back a bit to 15th (49.01%).
But there are people who wonder if he’s actually saying it’s time for the Steelers to “pass the sticks” to him, particularly after Conner left the game with a concussion.
Both signal-callers seem very unsure about pushing the ball downfield. In terms of Average Intended Air Yards (IAY), which measures the average Air Yards a passer throws on all attempts, despite many passing weapons, Roethlisberger has posted a mediocre mark of 7.8 IAY, while Newton has been a bit farther back at 7.4 IAY. Using Week 9 as an example, where passers like Baker Mayfield (11) and Aaron Rodgers (10) led the pack in deep passes — pass attempts traveling 16+ yards, Newton (6) and Roethlisberger (5) were a little more conservative.
Le’Veon Bell was certainly watching the Pittsburgh Steelers trounce the Carolina Panthers on Thursday Night Football, and once again, the NFL world was hanging on every word.
Measuring Newton as a passer only would be a disservice, and the quarterback has certainly used his legs to his advantage. Cam is lapping the field in rushing attempts, easily leading the same group with 62 carries, 342 rushing yards, and 4 rushing touchdowns.
But then there was this tweet that had everyone attempting to read between the lines. Was he trying to say it was time for him to return? Here’s what he had to say:
Steelers WR Antonio Brown pulled over for going 100 mph in his Porsche – NY Daily News
Despite that lack of a deep ball, both quarterbacks are performing well from a fantasy perspective, as seen from their point-per-game and FanDuel-point-per game marks.
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In terms of situation-neutral pace, the Steelers are one of the quickest teams in the league, ranking 9th (30.03 seconds), while Carolina plods along a lot more, clocking in 25th (32.16 seconds).
As weird and difficult as things have and continue to be in Pittsburgh at the running back position, it went to a whole new level yesterday:
Carolina Panthers defensive lineman Kyle Love looked as alert as his defense late in his teams blowout loss against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday night.
Antonio Brown cited for driving over 100 mph on morning of Steelers game
Trolling upside tweets or not, holding out this season in hopes of a large offseason contract, LeVeon Bell has given way to James Conner, who has been fantastic for the Steelers. Among the 34 running backs with 75 or more carries this year, Conner ranks 11th in Rushing NEP per carry (0.04). In terms of Rushing Success Rate, Conner has been strong as well, clocking in 10th (43.71%). Conner leads the AFC in rushing yards (706), and he ranks fourth in receptions among running backs (38).
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Video: Panthers Cam Newton shows support for victims of Pittsburgh attack
Christian McCaffrey has also been a beast this season, ranking 3rd in running back receptions (49), 19th in Rushing Success Rate (40.37%), and 16th in Rushing NEP per rush (0.00).
The Steelers Have A Ton Of Weapons – But Theres a Weakness
From a yards from scrimmage perspective, Conner ranks second (1,085), while McCaffrey ranks seventh (880), which also shows up in their individual fantasy rankings:
It looks like both teams have strong running games, but can these defenses step up to the task and hold down these runners?
Pittsburgh Steelers injury report: Gilbert, McCullers could miss Week 10
In looking at numberFires schedule-adjusted metrics, one of the strengths of the Steelers season has been their defense, which clocks in 10th, and the Panthers havent been quite so strong, ranking 16th.
Carolina is in town to face the Steelers on Thursday Night Football. Kickoff is scheduled for 8:20 p.m.
From analyzing Pittsburghs perspective, theyve been really good against both the run and the pass, ranking 8th against the pass and 12th against the run. Carolina has been pretty good against the pass, too — they rank 13th there but have struggled defending the run, now sitting 22nd.
Getting pressure on the opposing quarterback has a major strength for the Steelers, but a problem for the Panthers in 2018. In terms of Football Outsiders adjusted sack rate, which measures sacks plus intentional grounding penalties, Pittsburgh checks in seventh with a mark of 8.1%. Carolina, however, needs to step their game up, as they rank 20th with a mark of 7.1%.
Ben Roethlisberger has Pittsburgh Steelers playing like team possessed – NFL Nation- ESPN
As you may expect with the color mentioned above, Pittsburgh has been solid getting the ball back to Roethlisberger and company, but Carolina hasnt been so strong. Pittsburgh ranks 10th in yards allowed per drive (30.42), while Carolina clocks in 19th (33.06). Carolina has shined in forcing turnovers, ranking tied for seventh (15), while Pittsburgh has forced only nine this year.
David Tepper returned to his home city of Pittsburgh on Thursday, for his second game since he became the owner of the Carolina Panthers in July.
James Conner in concussion protocol
After visiting his new building at Carnegie Mellon University, the Tepper Quadrangle, as well as his old high school, Peabody (now the Barack Obama Academy), Tepper spoke with reporters on the sideline before Thursday nights Panthers game against the Steelers.
Tepper was closely involved in the design and construction of the Tepper Quad, and financed a third of the $201 million project. He has also been putting into place plans for new Carolina Panthers facilities.
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