Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger became the first player in NFL history to throw for more than 500 yards in a game twice during his career, shredding the Indianapolis Colts for 522 yards on Sunday. Roethlisberger already owned the Steelers team record with a 503-yard performance in 2009.
The Colts' secondary proved to be of little resistance against Roethlisberger and the Steelers passing attack. He racked up 63 passing yards on Pittsburgh's opening drive of the game and that was only the start. He finished the first quarter with 111 yards. A pair of long pass plays in the second quarter, including a 47-yard touchdown to Antonio Brown gave his total a significant boost before halftime.
Roethlisberger used all of his weapons to rack up yards. He's completed passes to nine different receivers, with five catching passes of at least 56 yards. Brown remained Roethlisberger's favorite target, hauling in 10 catches for 133 yards and two touchdowns. Four other players caught at least five passes with tight end Heath Miller also topping the 100-yard mark. Roethlisberger also set a team record with six touchdown passes, coming up one shy of tying the NFL record.
With his effort, Roethlisberger threatened the single-game passing record of 554 yards, set by Norm Van Brocklin in 1951. His sixth touchdown pass moved him to 522 yards in the game with plenty of time remaining. The Colts, however, were unable to score on the ensuing possession and the Steelers opted to run out the clock when they got the ball back. Roethlisberger finished tied with Boomer Esiason for the fourth-most yards in a single game. Matt Schaub is the leader among active quarterbacks with a 527-yard effort in 2012.
Some huge yardage totals are a product of a huge number of attempts. That isn't the case with Roethlisberger as he was ruthlessly efficient. He didn't need 60 attempts to rack up the yardage and instead completed 40 of 49 passes for an absurd 10.7 yards per attempt.