Steelers-Vikings Post-Game Notes

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STEELERS vs. VIKINGS SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25 2009 KICKOFF 1:00 P.M. HEINZ FIELD

POST-GAME NOTES

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.

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