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What went right, wrong vs. Tampa Bay

* It was a third-and-10 on the Steelers' third offensive possession, and the unit had yet to make a positive play. There already had been a couple of dropped passes and one batted down at the line of scrimmage, and the turnover that led to the Tampa Bay touchdown. But on that third-and-10, Markus Wheaton went high in the air to catch a 31-yard pass in traffic over the middle. That was the big play on a drive that ended with a 25-yard field goal by Shaun Suisham that cut the Buccaneers' lead to 10-3.

  • It looked like it was going to be another red zone failure, what would have been the second of the first quarter. On a third-and-goal at the 11-yard line, Antonio Brown slanted over the middle and Ben Roethlisberger stuck the throw right between the 8 and the 4. The touchdown tied the game, 10-10, at the end of the first quarter.
  • On a first-and-10 from the Steelers 42-yard line early in the second quarter of a 10-10 games, Cam Heyward broke through to sack Mike Glennon for a 15-yard loss that became a Buccaneers punt two plays later. It was Heyward's second sack of the season.
  • Antonio Brown's second touchdown of the first half came on a play in which he at first seemed to be blanketed by rookie cornerback Alterraun Verner. When Ben Roethlisberger first released the ball, it seemed as though Verner actually might be in better position to make the catch, but Brown did what All-Pro caliber receivers do – make a play when a play didn't seem possible to make. Brown's 27-yard touchdown gave the Steelers the 17-10 lead they took into the locker room at halftime.
  • It was a judicious use of his last challenge by Mike Tomlin. On a third-and-10 from the Pittsburgh 36-yard line, Antonio Brown made a catch along the Steelers sideline that initially was ruled incomplete because he did not have two feet down in bounds. Tomlin's challenge was upheld, and the resulting 27-yard gain put the ball at the Tampa Bay 37-yard line. The Steelers went on to score the touchdown that gave them the 24-17 lead they took into the fourth quarter.
  • With 4:54 left in the third quarter, the Steelers got their first interception of the season. With Mike Glennon trying to get the ball deep down the sideline to wide receiver Mike Evans, the Buccaneers receiver pulled a groin muscle and stopped running. Cortez Allen continued tracking the ball and made the catch at the Pittsburgh 11-yard line before getting up to return the ball 27 yards.

* That didn't take long. The Steelers got the ball first, and on second-and-10, Cody Wallace – making a second straight start for an injured Ramon Foster at left guard – fanned on Bucs DT Gerald McCoy, who sacked Ben Roethlisberger for a 6-yard loss. On the next play, Michael Johnson performed a sack/strip on Roethlisberger, and the ball was recovered by Jacquies Smith. Two plays later, Mike Evans beat Cortez Allen for a 7-yard touchdown catch that gave the Buccaneers a 7-0 lead with 13:01 remaining in the first quarter.

The Pittsburgh Steelers and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers faced off in Week 4 at Heinz Field.

  • On the second play of Tampa Bay's first possession, the Buccaneers scored a touchdown. On the second play of Tampa Bay's second possession, the Steelers were flagged for their first penalty – a facemask on Camp Thomas. This possession also ended with points when a low, line-drive field goal attempt by Patrick Murray barely cleared the crossbar from 50 yards out for a 10-0 lead for the Buccaneers. The game wasn't even five minutes old, and the Steelers were trailing by two scores.
  • Even though it got the Steelers on the scoreboard midway through the first quarter, it still goes down as a red zone failure. After a 19-yard pass to Antonio Brown gave the Steelers a first-and-goal at the 9-yard line, the Steelers first called a jet-sweep to Dri Archer that gained 1 yard. A quick pass to Heath Miller gained 1 yards. Then on third-and-goal, Ben Roethlisberger threw a slant pass to Justin Brown, who was unable to make the play. Shaun Suisham's field goal was good from 25 yards out.
  • How do you turn a 16-yard run into a 1-yard gain? That's what Le'Veon Bell did after his 16-yard run was reduced to a 1-yard gain by a taunting penalty called on the Steelers' running back.
  • How were the 0-3 Buccaneers within strike distance at the end of a first half in which they were trailing in first downs, 18-5, did not convert a single third-down situation, were outgained, 253-64, and averaged 2.4 yards per rush. By taking advantage of Steelers mistakes, which included five sacks allowed, six penalties for 60 yards, and a turnover inside the 10-yard line.
  • Tampa Bay tied the game early in the third quarter on a 3-yard run by Doug Martin around the left side in which Tampa Bay tackle Anthony Collins used his hands to spin Sean Spence around right in front of line judge Byron Boston. Not only was holding not called, but when Cam Heyward complained he was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.
  • It could have been the play that applied the coup de grace, but Antonio Brown dropped the ball. It began as a well-executed flea-flicker, with Ben Roethlisberger handing the ball to Le'Veon Bell, who then turned and pitched it back to the quarterback. Roethlisberger let the ball go at the Pittsburgh 25-yard line, but Brown, who was behind the coverage, dropped the ball at the Buccaneers 17-yard line.
  • Another 15-yard penalty, this one for a facemask violation called on Robert Golden in punt coverage, allowed Tampa Bay to start a possession midway through the fourth quarter at their own 25-yard line instead of at the 10-yard line.
  • Later in the possession, on a third-and-2 from the Pittsburgh 40-yard line, Arthur Moats flinched enough to make guard Logan Mankins move, which is a penalty on the defense. That gave Tampa Bay a first down at the Pittsburgh 35-yard line.
  • After a defensive stop, the Steelers offense got the ball at their own 14-yard line with 1:44 remaining. One first down, and the game is over. On the possession, Le'Veon Bell gained 2 yards on first down, and then Ben Roethlisberger completed a pass to Markus Wheaton for 8 yards. But in between, Maurkice Pouncey was flagged for an illegal snap, and the loss of yards forced the Steelers to punt.
  • Brad Wing picked a bad time for a bad punt. From the 17-yard line with 50 seconds left, Wing's punt traveled only 29 yards.
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