13 Oct 2010
Unfortunately, he's drawn the Pittsburgh Steelers. On the road.
The Steelers currently have the league's second-best defense. Against the pass, they rank fourth in the league, with a -17.2% DVOA.
How have rookie quarterbacks fared on the road against such strong defenses? Well, I never thought you'd ask! Since 1993, 41 quarterbacks have gone on the road to play a pass defense with a DVOA of -15% or lower.
Those quarterbacks' average line: 14-of-29 (49.2 percent) for 160 yards, with 0.7 touchdowns, 1.4 interceptions, and 2.7 sacks. Their teams went a collective 7-35, and in the seven wins, their defenses allowed an average of just 14.3 points per game.
As for a quarterback making his career debut on the road against such a tough defense? There's only one example of a rookie doing that: Drew Bledsoe, whose first NFL start came against the Buffalo Bills in 1993. Bledsoe went 14-of-30 for 148 yards, but he did have two touchdowns against just one pick.
We wish young Mr. McCoy the best of luck.
28 comments, Last at 15 Oct 2010, 7:36am by Mr Shush
Possibly the closest Super Bowl matchup in history also poses the question: how much does it mean when certain aspects of an NFL team improve dramatically in the second half of the season?