With the Pittsburgh Steelers at training camp to prepare for their 87th season of play, several players on the current roster can propel their names onto or farther up the list of all-time statistical greats.
While Hines Ward no longer is hearing footsteps, is a new contender coming close to keeping him awake again? Is it Ben or Bradshaw that statistically reigns supreme? Where is Cam Heyward on the all-time sacks list? Will “the Boz” rebound and regain his number one spot in all-time accuracy? After two seasons, how quickly is T.J. rising up? Those questions won’t be answered until January, but in our annual series, Steeling History, BTSC highlights the players that could move up the all-time charts and what they need to do so.
Ben is, far and away, the greatest statistical quarterback in the history of Pittsburgh football. There will always be a debate on whether Roethlisberger or Terry Bradshaw is the greatest Steelers’ slinger of all-time. No. 7 owns pretty much every Steelers’ quarterbacking record, but what he lacks is the greatest record of them all — the four Super Bowl titles owned by the incomparable and aforementioned Bradshaw.
Here’s where Benjamin Todd Roethlisberger ranks first in Steelers QB passing lore:
Most Passing Yards (Career): 56,194
Most Passing Yards (Single Season): 5,129 (2018)
Most Passing Yards (Single Game): 522
Most 300 Yard Passing Games (Career): 60
Most 300 Yard Passing Games (Single Season): 9
Most Completions (Career): 4,616
Most Completions (Single Season): 452 (2018)
Most Completions (Single Game): 41 (11/25/18)
Most Consecutive Completions: 15 (tied with Bubby Brister)
Highest Competion Percentage (Career): 64.4%
Highest Competion Percentage (Single Game): 88.0% (11/8/18)
Highest Competion Percentage (Single Season): 68.0% (2015)
Most Touchdown Passes (Career): 363
Most Touchdown Passes (Single Season): 34 (2018)
Most Touchdown Passes (Single Game): 6 (twice)
Highest Passer Rating (Career): 94.2
Highest Passer Rating (Single Season): 104.1 (2007)
Most 4th Quarter Comebacks (Career): 31
Most Game Winning Drives (Career): 43
Wins (Career): 144
One of the few records that Ben doesn’t have is a positive one. Big Ben (172) is second all-time in interceptions thrown to Terry Bradshaw (210).
Roethlisberger is getting ready to start his 16th season and he’s set to surpass Mike Webster atop that legendary mountain. But he trails the iron man Webster in games played. Ben’s 216 games played, is good enough for third on the franchise list. The two up top are Hines Ward (217) and Webster (220). So the record could be seized Week 5.
Once again, the landmark that Steelers fans care about most for Ben Roethlisberger to achieve is Super Bowl victories. The hope is that Ben ends the 2019 campaign only one ring shy of tying the record of four.
Going into his third season and second as a starter, Conner ranks 26th with 12 rushing scores. Were he to duplicate his 12 from last season, No. 30 would jet up to a tie with Willie Parker for 10th place. Conner’s 1,117 yards has him ranked 33rd. Matching his 973 yards from last year would jump him up to 19th place. JC would need 1,141 to get past Terry Bradshaw and into 17th.
After only two seasons as a pro, JJSS is already 22nd in team career receptions with 169. Matching last year’s total of 111 would bump JuJu up to 280 and tenth on the list. No. 19 has 2,343 career receiving yards, good for 23rd. By duplicating last year’s 1,426 yards, the third-year man could rocket up over Roy Jefferson for 13th place. JuJu has 14 career TDs. A year of 12 would move Smith-Schuster to 12th place. Not bad for going into one’s third season.
Currently, Boswell fell in 2018 to being the second-most accurate field-goal kicker in the history of the Steelers, converting only 13 of 20 in 2018. Making 98 of his 115 career attempts, No. 9 has a career percentage of 85.2%, Suisham is at 87.9%. Boswell would need to go 29 of 30 to retake Suisham. His 98 “makes” are good for sixth place. If he could convert on eight next season, the Boz would move past Norm Johnson (104) and into fifth place. Shaun Suisham at number four (124) is possible as well.
Two years ago, Cam was tied with Keith Gary for 25th on the Steelers’ career sack list. After recording 8 last season and 12 the year before, Heyward now ranks seventh with 45. With nine more in 2018, No. 97 would surpass Greg Lloyd for sixth place. LaMarr Woodley (57), Keith Willis (59) and Joey Porter (60) are next on the lose.
Watt has 20 sacks in two seasons. If he can duplicate his season average in 2019, No. 90 will jump from his tie for 23rd with current teammates Stephon Tuitt and Bud Dupree to a tie for 14th with Brett Keisel and James Farrior. 12.5 from any of the three would be good for a tie at 11th with Clark Haggans.
The Steeler coach is going into his 13th season coaching the Steelers. Mike has a record of 125-66-1 with a .654 winning percentage. Coach T has the highest winning percentage in team history over Bill Cowher (.623) and Chuck Noll (.566). However, Tomlin is still 25 wins from passing Cowher for second at 149. Noll leads at 193 wins. Tomlin is the only of the three never to finish a season with a losing record.