Postgame Takes

Win over Browns puts Steelers at 5-5

STEELERS 24, BROWNS 9Steelers record:

5-5One year ago:
6-4Series record (including playoffs):
Steelers lead, 71-58**

Game action from Week 11 against the Cleveland Browns.


The weather rarely is pretty for these weekend trips, and there have been times when it was brutal. Such is life on the shores of one of the Great Lakes as autumn becomes winter, a time when the two scariest words to the residents are "lake effect." By the time the team's caravan arrived in town on Saturday evening, the rain had turned to sleet and was coming in at an angle thanks to a not-so-gentle-breeze. In other words, a November Saturday in Cleveland.

At dawn on Sunday, the streets and sidewalks were just wet, having been warmed by temperatures in the 60s just a couple of days previous, but rooftops were white from the events of the previous day. As usual, weather was expected to be an issue for a Steelers game against the Browns in Cleveland.

The weather at kickoff was 36-degrees with winds out of the west at 27 miles per hour, which made the wind-chill 24 degrees.

A couple of days before the game, Coach Mike Tomlin said, "The initial forecast is calling for significant gusts of wind and that could affect the game. These are the two direct ways it could affect the game: if the wind is significant, then it's going to be the things in the kicking game – net punting, kickoffs out of bounds, drive start – things that are affected by the kicking game and the kickoff game specifically. If the wind is significant, keep an eye on those things. And in the passing game, we're comfortable with Ben's ability to cut the wind because of his arm strength and experience and things he has been through over the years. I would imagine there would be more unknowns in the passing game with Cody Kessler if the winds are significant and continuous."HOW THE STORYLINE PLAYED OUT

Jordan Berry's net punting average was 39.3 yards, and Chris Boswell was 3-for-3 in field goals and sent three of his five kickoffs out of the end zone for touchbacks. The Steelers were not impacted by the weather in any significant way, which allowed them to take advantage of their better and more experienced personnel.**


The offense possessed the ball for 20:37 and converted 5-of-7 on third downs. Le'Veon Bell had 16 carries for 85 yards and a touchdown, plus another 50 yards on seven catches to finish the half with 135 yards from scrimmage. The defense allowed 50 total net yards and had three sacks, plus an interception. TURNING POINT

The Steelers led, 6-0, with just seconds remaining in the first half, and they had the ball at the Cleveland 3-yard line with five seconds left. Two penalties against the Browns – defensive holding and then pass interference in the end zone – led to two untimed downs, and on the second one, Le'Veon Bell scored a 1-yard touchdown. The subsequent 2-point conversion pass from Ben Roethlisberger to David Johnson gave the Steelers a 14-0 halftime lead and some breathing room in a game they were otherwise dominating.

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