This is a big game. For both teams. Not a playoff game (something Dalton has never won in five tries). But a big game. It's a statement game.
For what it's worth, historically, the Steelers have been less than good in games featuring Ben Roethlisberger's return from time missed due to injury. The team has a 2-4 record in such situations. Roethlisberger has thrown eight touchdown passes in those six games, but also seven interceptions.
Draft-Day Decisions That Have Reverberated Down the Line
Cincinnati's front office and coaching staff have built their current team largely through successful drafts. Over recent years, the Steelers and Bengals have been fairly close in the standings, which means their respective drafting positions have also been in close proximity.
Looking back at the 2013 NFL draft, the Steelers passed on tight end Tyler Eiffert (6'6", 250) to select linebacker Jarvis Jones with the 17th overall pick, despite some observers' concerns, including our own, about Jones's medical history and 4.92 time in the 40-yard dash. The Bengals selected Eiffert with the 21st overall pick.
|Myron Cope, father of The Terrible Towel|
Yeah. Although hampered by injuries during most of their respective NFL careers, Eiffert is having a better year than Jones, no question. He has six touchdowns and 28 receptions for a 12.2 yards-per-catch average.
While Jones and Eiffert were the first-rounders in 2013, the second-rounders certainly cannot be overlooked. The Bengals took running back Giovanni Bernard (No. 37 overall) over Le'Veon Bell (48th overall) in the second round.
Bell is the better running back, no doubt about that. And he's been better than both Eiffert and Jones, for that matter, as well. With their other second round selection in 2013, the Bengals picked defensive end Margus Hunt (53rd overall). The Steelers' next pick that year was wide receiver Markus Wheaton (third round, 79th overall).