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After further review: Difficult to digest, easy to appreciate

It defied comprehension at times, as well as description.

Defensive tackle Cam Heyward intercepted a pass.

Wide receivers James Washington, Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson all ran the ball, twice.

Kicker Chris Boswell missed an extra point but connected on field goals of 54, 52 and 40 yards, the last of which turned a one-point deficit into a two-point advantage with less than 30 seconds left in regulation.

Boswell also recovered a fumble.

And the Steelers had to beat the clock and then hang on in the closing seconds to beat the Bears, 29-27, in a game they had led by 14 points not once but twice (at 14-0 and 20-6).

"It's better to learn and win than lose and win," Heyward assessed.


"Wow, I totally butchered that," he quickly acknowledged. "It's better to learn and win than lose and learn."

Heyward's fumble at the postgame podium at Heinz Field was forgivable.

There was a lot to process.

At the top of the list should be this:

The Steelers are 5-3.

If the manner in which victory was achieved was less than inspiring at times, so be it.

The alternative would have been trying to comprehend a loss to a 3-5 team with a rookie quarterback (Justin Fields has the goods, but he's just getting started) at home in a game in which control had seemingly been established.

Game action photos from the Steelers' Week 9 game against the Chicago Bears at Heinz Field

Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and the offense saw to it that no such contemplation would be necessary after Fields delivered a potential dagger inside the two-minute warning.

Roethlisberger has made a career of engineering fourth-quarter comebacks.

And yet this time he was disappointed it had to come to that.

"I still feel like we were the reason we put ourselves in the situation to have to do that," he maintained. "Look at it how you want, I guess."

Or look at how they're looking at it in Buffalo, which lost to Jacksonville.

Or in Dallas, which lost to Denver.

Or Las Vegas, which lost to the New York Football Giants.

At the conclusion of a Week 9 that confirmed once again the almost inexplicable, week-to-week unpredictability of the NFL, the Steelers found a way to win for the fourth consecutive week in which they've played a game.

As if such confirmation was necessary.

Is what we've seen through the four-game winning streak that has resurrected a season once teetering on the edge of the abyss at 1-3 sustainable?

Ask the Ravens, who are 6-2 after having won twice and lost once in overtime.

Baltimore also needed a missed delay-of-game call and a 66-yard field goal to beat Detroit at the buzzer in regulation.

That would be still-winless Detroit, which visits Heinz Field this Sunday.

"If you've done this long enough you know that very few leads are safe, games are never over no matter how well you're playing or how bad you're playing," Roethlisberger added. "Tonight was one of those nights that hopefully we all can appreciate to know you've gotta play 60 minutes and sometimes more.

"You can't let up."

The Steelers didn't against the Bears.

They haven't yet through eight games.

If that much is sustainable, the rest of what they're after may yet be attainable.

Even if it's hard to explain.

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