Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Keeping the Internet Green:
Pittsburgh Steelers Fanatic Recycles

NOTE: In the interest of killing time until there is new football action over which to wring our hands, we've decided to re-publish our season-ending series of statistical snapshots of the Steelers' 2007 season.

As if watching the Steelers go down to defeat on Saturday wasn't difficult enough, in-and-of itself, there is the issue of creating informative, compelling material for you our reader (not a typo -- you, singular, our reader).

So we've decided to take a few days (or weeks, if we can stretch it out that long) to look at the 2007 performance of the Pittsburgh Steelers in a few statistical categories, relative to the other teams in the league. And to spice it up a little bit we've decided to actually go back a ways and take a look at how "things" are trending over the last eight NFL seasons (i.e. 2000-2008 inclusive). We begin with points scored. Here are the total points that the Steelers have scored during each season in that period:

Season 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007
Points 321 352 390 300 372 389 353 393

It is good to see that, despite the slippage in 2006, the generally trend is a positive one. However, as always, we ask the question what do these numbers mean? To provide some context we have calculated the league average over the same period and provide a graph to illustrate just how the Steelers compare to the other teams in the league (click on the picture to get a larger view):


It appears that while the Steelers are obviously scoring above the league averages they are not immune from fluctuations in scoring from season-to-season. Additionally, while the Steelers have exceeded the league average in all but two seasons, they are one of nine teams not to have scored at least 400 points in at least one of the eight seasons at which we are looking (the other teams are Baltimore, Buffalo, Carolina, Detroit, Houston -- they came into the league in 2002, and are not included in the seasonal averages prior to that season -- Miami, New York Jets, Tampa Bay, and Washington. Something that strikes us about this list is that at least three of the teams -- Baltimore, Tampa Bay, and Washington -- have had head coaches during that period who were known for their offensive prowess).

One final note, the 2000 season featured Kordell Stewart at starting quarterback (11 TDs, 8 INTs), and saw Kent Graham get some playing time as well (1 TD, 1 INT). Meanwhile, the 2003 season featured Tommy Maddox as the starting quarterback (18 TDs/17 INTs) and went 6-10 on the season, and at one point lost five consecutive games.

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