The Washington Post

Redskins-Steelers game day notes


Robert Griffin III and the Redskins aim to improve to 4-4 against the Steelers. (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

The Washington Redskins and Pittsburgh Steelers face off at 1 p.m. today at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh.

The Redskins hope to improve to 4-4, while the Steelers look to move to 4-3.

 The Redskins are coming off of a last-minute 27-24 loss to the New York Giants, while the Steelers beat the Eagles 16-14 last week.

 The Redskins and Steelers have faced each other 76 times dating back to 1933, with the Redskins holding a 42-31-3 advantage over Pittsburgh. The Steelers, however, have won five straight meetings dating back to 1997. The Redskins last beat Pittsburgh in 1991, winning 41-14. Pittsburgh and Washington haven’t played since 2008, when the Steelers came out on top 23-6.

 Here are some other facts for this game:

  • The Redskins seek to extend their streak of 100-yard rushing games to 14. The team’s 13 straight 100-yard games is the longest streak in the NFL. The second-longest active streak belongs to St. Louis, at three.
  • The Redskins have rushed for 125 yards or more nine straight times, dating back to last season, and another 125-plus rushing performance today would mark the first time Washington has done so 10 straight games since 1991.
  • Washington can become the first team since the Chicago Bears in 1984 to rush for at least 125 yards in their first eight games of a season.
  • A 200-yard rushing performance today would give the Redskins their first back-to-back 200-yard games since Weeks 4 and 5 of 1984.
  • The Redskins need 440 offensive yards (passing and rushing) to set a team record for the most offensive yards in the first eight games of the season, surpassing the 3,282 yard total recorded in the first eight games of the 1984 season.
  • With an interception by the defense today, the Redskins can extend their streak to nine games, dating back to last season. It would be the first such streak for the defense since Weeks 16 and 17 of the 1995 season and Weeks 1 through 8 of the 1996 season.
  • The Redskins and Chicago Bears are the only two NFL teams with an interception in every game this season.
  • The Redskins have recorded an interception in the first eight games of the season for the third time since 1970 (1980 and 1989).
  • However, Washington enters this game having surrendered seven pass plays of 40 yards or more, and 16 pass plays of 25 yards or more.
  • The Redskins’ defense ranks last in the NFL against the pass, having surrendered 2,299 yards. Washington is on pace to surrender 5,254 yards, which would shatter the league record (4,796) set by the Green Bay Packers in 2011.
  • The Redskins have returned interceptions for touchdowns three times this season. The team last scored four touchdowns off of interceptions in 1984.
  • The Redskins have scored four defensive touchdowns (three interceptions, one fumble). The team last scored five defensive touchdowns in a season in 1994.
  • Linebacker London Fletcher is expected to play today despite being slowed by injury this week. He aims to extend his league-leading (tied with Tampa Bay’s Ronde Barber) consecutive games streak to 232 games.
  • Quarterback Robert Griffin III enters the game with six rushing touchdowns and needs two more two more to tie the Redskins’ rookie record. Running back Skip Hicks rushed for eight touchdowns in 1998.
  • Griffin is 399 passing yards shy of the 2,000-yard mark. If he reaches that mark today, he would join Cam Newton as the only rookies to pass for 2,000 yards in the first eight games of his career. Griffin would join Brad Johnson (2,093) and Mark Rypien (2,192) as the only Redskins quarterbacks who have passed for 2,000 yards in their first eight games of a season.
  • Accomplishing that feat will be a challenge, however, because the Steelers rank first against the pass, limiting teams to 185 passing yards a game.
  • Griffin needs 32 rushing yards to reach the 500-yard mark. It would mark the 28th time in NFL history (since the 1970 league merger) that a quarterback has rushed for at least 500 yards.
  • Running back Alfred Morris has rushed for 100 yards or more four times this season. He needs 142 rushing yards to join Adrian Peterson, Eric Dickerson, George Rogers and Billy Sims as the only NFL rookies to rush for 800 yards in their first eight games of the season.
  • Morris and Griffin can become the first quarterback/running back tandem to each rush for at least 500 yards in a rookie season.
  • Redskins coach Mike Shanahan owns a 3-1 record against the Pittsburgh Steelers for his career.
  • A win today would give Shanahan his 161st regular season victory as a head coach, and would give him his 169th overall victory as a head coach, putting him in 14th place on the all-time wins list.

 Connections between these teams:

  • Redskins defensive coordinator Jim Haslett held the same position for Pittsburgh from 1997-99.
  • Redskins defensive end Doug Worthington was drafted by the Steelers in 2010.
  • Steelers safety Ryan Clark played for the Redskins from 2004-05.
  • Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham played for Washington from 2006-09.
  • Pittsburgh running backs coach held the same position in Washington in 2000.
  • Haslett, Redskins linebackers coach Bob Slowik and special teams coach Danny Smith all are from the Pittsburgh area.
  • Fletcher played under Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau in Buffalo in 2003. Smith was a member of the same coaching staff for the Bills that year.
  • Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and defensive backs coach Raheem Morris and Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin were assistants on the same Tampa Bay coaching staff from 2004-05. Redskins offensive line coach Chris Foerster and Tomlin were both Tampa Bay assistants in 2001.
  • Slowick served as defensive backs coach for the Cleveland Browns in 1999 while Steelers linebackers coach Keith Butler held the same position for the Browns the same season.
  • Steelers receiver Jerricho Cotchery and Redskins players Santana Moss and Will Montgomery were teammates for the New York Jets at various points from 2004-2008.
  • Redskins offensive lineman Maurice Hurt and Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey, tackle Marcus Gilbert and running back Chris Rainey were college teammates at Florida.
  • Redskins linebacker Mario Addison and Steelers defensive tackle Steve McLendon were teammates at Troy.
  • Redskins defensive lineman Stephen Bowen and Steelers guard Willie Colon were teammates at Hofstra.
  • Redskins receiver Aldrick Robinson and guard Josh LeRibeus and Steelers tackle Kelvin Beachum and receiver Emmanuel Sanders played together at SMU.
  • Redskins defensive end Kedric Golston played with Steelers tight end Leonard Pope at Georgia.
  • Redskins backup quarterback Rex Grossman played with Steelers tackle Max Starks at Florida.
  • Redskins receiver Leonard hankerson and Steelers linebacker Sean Spence and defensive back DeMarcus Van Dyke played together at Miami.
  • Redskins receiver Josh Morgan and Steelers linebacker Jason Worilds were teammates at Virginia Tech.
  • Redskins linebacker Perry Riley and running back Keiland Williams and Steelers defensive tackle Al Woods were teammates at LSU.
  • Worthington and Steelers tackle Mike Adams and defensive end Cameron Heyward were teammates at Ohio State.
  • Redskins linebackers Brian Orakpo and Keenan Robinson played with Steelers defensive back Curtis Brown at Texas.
Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.



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Mark Maske · October 28, 2012