Titans-Steelers Series History
Nashville, TN – There have been 78 meetings between the Tennessee Titans / Houston Oilers and the Pittsburg Steelers in a rivalry that dates back to 1970. The Steelers lead the series 46-32.
There is no other team the Titans/Oilers have met in their history as often as the Steelers, with the Cincinnati Bengals being next most common opponent at 75 games.
In 1970, upon the merger of the American Football League and the National Football League, the Steelers and then-Oilers began play in the newly-formed AFC Central Division.
Tennessee Titans running back Bishop Sankey (20) is defended by Pittsburgh Steelers safety Mike Mitchell (23) on a 9-yard touchdown run in the first quarter at LP Field. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)
For the next 32 years (1970-2001), they competed at least twice per season with the exception of 1982 (strike-shortened season) before the Titans moved to the AFC South and the Steelers to the AFC North in 2002.
Since 1970, there have been only five seasons (2004, 2006, 2007, 2015 and 2016) in which the Titans and Steelers have not squared off.
The first meeting in 1970, a 19-7 Oilers win, was the first regular season game in Three Rivers Stadium, the Steelers’ home until moving to Heinz Field in 2001.
The Steelers have won the two most recent matchups, including a Thursday primetime meeting at Heinz Field in Week 11 of the 2017 regular season. The Steelers defense produced four interceptions and five sacks, helping the hosts pull away in the fourth quarter for a 40-17 win.
Tennessee Titans linebacker Quentin Groves (52) sacks Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) at LP Field. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)
The Steelers’ most recent visit to Nissan Stadium was on Monday night, November 17th, 2014. Despite 263 passing yards from rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger, the Titans were unable to overcome the Steelers, led by Le’Veon Bell’s 204 rushing yards, and fell by a score of 27-24.
The last time the Titans beat the Steelers was in the 2013 season opener at Heinz Field. The Titans used five sacks from their defense and a ball-control offense to win 16-9, despite giving up an unusual safety on the opening kickoff.
There have been four postseason games played between the franchises, most recently a 34-31 overtime thriller in favor of the Titans in the 2002 Divisional Round. The first two playoff meetings were back-to-back AFC Championship Games following the 1978 and 1979 seasons, with Pittsburgh’s “Steel Curtain” prevailing both times against the “Luv Ya Blue!” Oilers.
The Oilers also lost a 1989 Wild Card Game in overtime against the Steelers.
Titans-Steelers Most Recent Matchups
2012 Week 6 • Oct. 11, 2012 • Steelers 23 at TITANS 26
Rob Bironas kicks a game-winning 40-yard field goal as time expires following Shaun Suisham’s 54-yard missed attempt with 54 seconds remaining. Tim Shaw’s blocked punt leads to Tennessee’s first touchdown. Matt Hasselbeck, starting for an injured Jake Locker (shoulder), passes for 290 yards and the game-tying touchdown to Kenny Britt (five yards). Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger passes for 363 yards, including 82-yard score to Mike Wallace.
2013 Week 1 • Sept. 8, 2013 • TITANS 16 at Steelers 9
The Titans get two turnovers from the Steelers, record five sacks and allow only 32 rushing yards on 15 carries in season opener. The Titans rush for 112 yards on 42 carries, including a three-yard touchdown run by Jackie Battle. Rob Bironas makes three field goals. The Titans spot the Steelers two points when Darius Reynaud is called for a safety on the opening kickoff but don’t allow any more points until late in the fourth quarter. The Titans win time of possession at 34:01.
2014 Week 11 • Nov. 17, 2014 • STEELERS 27 at Titans 24
Kickoff temperature of 25 degrees makes the Monday night matchup the coldest game in Nissan Stadium history. Le’Veon Bell rushes for 204 yards and a touchdown to help Steelers overcome an 11-point deficit in the second half. Zach Mettenberger’s 263 passing yards set a record for a rookie on Monday night. Mettenberger completes an 80-yard touchdown to Nate Washington. The Titans defense records five sacks, but the Steelers possess the ball for 39:49.
2017 Week 11 • Nov. 16, 2017 • Titans 17 at STEELERS 40
In a Thursday night game, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger throws four touchdown passes, including three to receiver Antonio Brown. Brown finishes with 144 yards on 10 catches. Marcus Mariota passes for 306 yards but is intercepted four times and sacked five times by the Steelers defense. Mariota rushes for a seven-yard touchdown in the first quarter and completes a 75-yard touchdown to Rishard Matthews on the first play of the third quarter.