STEELERS vs. VIKINGS SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25 2009 KICKOFF 1:00 P.M. HEINZ FIELD
Pittsburgh Team Notes:
• The Steelers improved to 7-8 all-time against the Minnesota Vikings in the regular season, including a 5-4 mark in Pittsburgh.
• Pittsburgh improved to a perfect 4-0 on the year at Heinz Field and stretched its home winning streak to eight games at home.
• The Steelers have won four straight games, which is the longest streak for the team since they won five straight games Weeks 11-15 of last year.
• The Steelers have now won seven straight home games against teams in the NFC North, dating back to 1995.
• Pittsburgh improved to 88-55-1 all-time in the regular season against teams from the NFC.
• The Steelers have won 16 of their past 21 regular-season games versus teams in the NFC, dating back to 2003.
• Pittsburgh improved to a perfect 4-0 when facing a 6-0 team in their history, having previously defeated New England (34-20 in 2004), San Francisco (20-17 in 1984) and Cincinnati (30-24 in 1975).
• Pittsburgh improved to a perfect 4-0 in the month of October this year and upped its all-time record to 30-12 (.714) in the month of October (since the NFL merger in 1970). The Steelers have won eight of the past 10 games in the month of October, dating back to 2007.
• The attendance of 65,597 is a Heinz Field record, surpassing the old mark of 65,350 set January 18, 2009 during last season's AFC Championship Game against the Baltimore Ravens. The previous regular-season record was 65,110, which was set on September 10, 2009 against Tennessee.
• Pittsburgh jumped out to a 3-0 lead with four seconds left in the first quarter as K Jeff Reedbooted a 39-yard field goal. The Steelers had a touchdown called back on the drive because of an offensive pass interference penalty.
• Minnesota responded with a 13-play drive that ended with a two-yard run by RB Adrian Peterson with 5:12 remaining in the first half to give it a 7-3 advantage.
• Pittsburgh took a 10-7 lead just before the half as rookie WR Mike Wallacehauled in a 40-yard touchdown pass from QB Ben Roethlisberger. It was Wallace's second touchdown of the season.
• Reed had a 27-yard field goal on the Steelers' first drive of the second half to give the Steelers a 13-7 lead with 11:05 remaining in the third quarter.
• Minnesota came back to cut the lead to 13-10 as K Ryan Longwell kicked an 18-yard field goal with 4:44 remaining in the third quarter. The Steelers held the Vikings to just three points after Minnesota had it first-and-goal.
• The Vikings appeared ready to either tie the game or take the lead midway through the fourth quarter, but LB LaMarr Woodleyscooped up a QB Brett Favre fumble, which was forced on a sack by DE Brett Keisel, and returned it 77 yards for a touchdown with 6:23 remaining in the game. It marked the first fumble return for a touchdown by the Steelers since Woodley had a seven-yard fumble return for a score against the Baltimore Ravens on Sept. 29, 2008.
• WR Percy Harvin took the ensuing kickoff and returned it 88 yards for a touchdown to trim the lead to 20-17.
• After a punt by the Steelers, Minnesota regained possession and drove to the Pittsburgh 19-yard line, but LB Keyaron Foxtook a tipped pass, intercepted it and returned it 82 yards for the game-clinching touchdown with only one minute remaining in the contest to seal the victory, 27-17. It was the Steelers' first interception return of the year and the first since S Tyrone Carterintercepted a pass and returned it 32 yards for a score in the 2008 season finale against the Cleveland Browns.
• The Steelers had two defensive touchdowns in the same game since CB Dewayne Washington had two interception returns for touchdowns against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Nov. 22, 1998.
• Pittsburgh was outgained in the game 386-259 in total offense, including 297-153 through the air.
• The Steelers tallied 14 first downs and allowed Minnesota to gain 21 first downs.
• Pittsburgh converted just 33 percent (4 of 12) of their third-down attempts. The Vikings converted 50 percent (9 of 18).
• The Vikings were flagged 11 times for 78 yards while the Steelers were penalized only three times for 15 yards.
• Pittsburgh held the ball for 23:02 to the Vikings' 36:58.
• Each team lost a fumble and Minnesota tossed one interception.
• Pittsburgh finished with four sacks, including two by LB James Harrisonand one each by LB James Farriorand Keisel.
• QB Dennis Dixon (3rd QB), CB Keenan Lewis, FB Carey Davis, LB Andre Frazier, OG Kraig Urbik, OT Tony Hills, and DE Sunny Harriswere inactive for the Steelers.
Pittsburgh Individual Notes:
QB Ben Roethlisberger
• Finished 14-of-26 for 175 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions (87.8 passer rating).
• Tossed a 40-yard touchdown pass to WR Mike Wallace in the second quarter.
• Improved to 56-22 as a starter.
• Improved to 32-8 all-time in the regular season at Heinz Field.
• Improved to 16-5 all-time as a starter in the month of October.
RB Rashard Mendenhall
• Made his fourth straight start (fifth career).
• Finished with a team-high 69 yards on 10 carries (6.9 avg.), including a long of 17 yards.
WR Hines Ward
• Has now caught a pass in a team-record 169 consecutive games.
• Finished with one catch for three yards.
WR Santonio Holmes
• Finished with two catches for 59 yards (29.5 avg.).
• Had a 45-yard reception early in the fourth quarter.
WR Stefan Logan
• Averaged 26.3 yards on four kickoff returns and 8.0 yards on two punt returns.
WR Mike Wallace
• Finished with three catches for 72 yards (24.0 avg.) with one touchdown.
• Hauled in a 40-yard touchdown from Roethlisberger late in the first half.
• Added two rushes for 19 yards, including a long of 13 yards.
TE Heath Miller
• Caught a team-high six passes for 38 yards (6.3 avg.).
DE Brett Keisel
• Posted his first sack of the season and forced a fumble (first of the year), which led to a 77-yard fumble return for a touchdown by LB LaMarr Woodley.
• Finished with four tackles.
LB LaMarr Woodley
• Returned a fumble 77 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter. It was his second career fumble return for a touchdown and the longest of his career.
• Finished with two tackles (one solo).
LB James Farrior
• Posted his second sack of the season (26th of his career) with an eight-yard sack on the Vikings' second drive of the game.
• Finished with a game-high 15 tackles (nine solo).
LB James Harrison
• Posted a six-yard sack in the first quarter.
• Added an eight-yard sack on the last play of the game, giving him a team-high eight on the season.
LB Keyaron Fox
• Picked off a pass and returned it 82 yards for a touchdown with one minute remaining in the game for his first career touchdown and first career interception.
• Finished with two tackles.
S Ryan Clark
• Finished with seven tackles (six solo).
S Troy Polamalu
• Totaled six tackles (all solo) with two pass breakups.
CB Ike Taylor
• Finished with 10 tackles (seven solo).
CB William Gay
• Tallied eight tackles (seven solo).
K Jeff Reed
• Was a perfect 3-for-3 in PATs and 2-for-2 in FGs for nine points.
• Booted a 39-yard field goal late in the first quarter to give Pittsburgh a 3-0 advantage.
• Added a 27-yard field goal on the first drive of the second half.