STEELERS 24, BENGALS 17
Steelers’ record: 3-3
One year ago: 4-2
Series record (including playoffs): Steelers lead, 52-32
As Coach Mike Tomlin perceived things, the Steelers needed to understand their situation and play with the energy required to become what they want to be. “We know what we are. We are a 2-3 football team that obviously hasn’t won on the road. There’s no time like the present to change that. That’s our mentality and I think that’s the mentality that reverberated throughout the group yesterday. Mentality is one thing, actions are another. We have to put ourselves in position to take action.”
It seemed as though the Steelers were slogging their way to a loss to the Bengals, mired in holding penalties and a couple of early turnovers in a game they trailed at the time, 14-6. What they needed was a splash play, and
STAT THAT STANDS OUT
When the Heinz Field Steelers have played the Paul Brown Stadium Bengals, it has been more of a homefield disadvantage. Since Paul Brown Stadium opened for the 2000 NFL season, the Steelers have lost fewer games there to the Bengals than they have lost to them at Heinz Field. The Steelers have lost TWICE to the Bengals at PBS, four times at Heinz Field.
WHAT WENT RIGHT
It was vintage “Ben being Ben.” On a third-and-3 from the Steelers’ 16-yard line late in the first quarter, Roethlisberger got away from two pass rushers, including Geno Atkins, before converting with a 20-yard pass to
On the 21-yard pass to
On a 21-yard run by
The Steelers got themselves a takeaway thanks to a weird bounce and some good hands displayed by LaMarr Woodley. The ball slipped out of Andy Dalton’s hand and then bounced off the back of an offensive lineman’s helmet. Woodley came up with the carom to set up the possession that ended with a touchdown pass and then a two-point conversion pass to
On a third-and-1 at the Steelers’ 30-yard line during the opening possession of the third quarter,
It was the first touchdown of Chris Rainey’s career – an 11-yard run early in the fourth quarter that gave the Steelers a 24-17 lead – and it was made possible in part by fine blocks from Willie Colon and Heath Miller.
On a fourth-and-11 at the Bengals 37-yard line with less than six minutes left in the game,
The Steelers used their running game to kill the clock in the fourth quarter and set up a situation where Ben Roethlisberger was in victory formation for the final snap of the game.
WHAT WENT WRONG
On the Bengals’ second offensive play, a pass from Andy Dalton bounced off the hands of A.J. Green, but a diving
The Steelers had an apparent touchdown slip through the fingers – literally – on a play that started with a lateral from Ben Roethlisberger to Antonio Brown, who then threw a pass to a wide open
Another special teams penalty on a return gave the Steelers offense poor field position midway through the second quarter. A 34-yard punt return by Antonio Brown was nullified by a holding penalty on
On the play after Van Dyke’s penalty, Robert Geathers knocked the ball out of Roethlisberger’s hand and it was recovered by Devon Still at the Pittsburgh 8-yard line. One play after that, it was in the end zone for a touchdown on a quick slant pass from Andy Dalton to A.J. Green, and the Bengals had extended their lead to 14-3.
Incredibly, another holding penalty on another return gave the Steelers bad field position yet again in the first half. This time it was Baron Batch, and this time the ball was moved back to the 10-yard line.
Another holding penalty on a return – this one on a punt by Antonio Brown and called on
SO MUCH FOR HEALTHY SCRATCHES ON GAME DAY
Two games ago, while preparing for the Philadelphia Eagles, the Steelers injury report was a coach’s delight. There were some names on it, but only to point out that they were back practicing after having missed some time. None of their seven inactives for the Eagles game were because of injury.
That changed dramatically in the week leading up to their game in Cincinnati. Starters
Jonathan Dwyer got the start at running back, and C/G