Steelers Week 1 Recap: Steelers Top Redskins

Sep 12, 2016; Landover, MD, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison (92) stands on the field prior to the Steelers
Sep 12, 2016; Landover, MD, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison (92) stands on the field prior to the Steelers /

The Steelers got off to a great start this season after getting off to a slow start this game. Week 1 against the Redskins is in the books, and it’s a win.

It was Monday night. Steeler Nation gathered around their TV sets ready for another season of football. Injuries and suspensions be damned, we have a Super Bowl team, time to ascend that stairway to seven.

The game started of slow enough. The Steelers and Redskins traded a couple punts in DC. Then Kirk Cousins threw a pass to DeSean Jackson for 31 yards. Then the drive stalled after that but the Steelers were down by 3 after a field goal. It could have been 7 if not for a timely deflection made by Ryan Shazier calling on his super speed.

Now it’s the Steelers turn. The Steelers moved down the field a bit thanks to 20 yard grab by Eli Rogers. Then Bashaud Breeland broke up a pass intended for Rogers and scooped it up before it hit the ground. The Redskins didn’t get much further down field but far enough to get another field goal. Steelers down 6.

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The next drive Roethlisberger was stripped by Ryan Kerrigan and the ball bounced around a bit before being recovered by Pittsburgh. They finished the quarter with a nice 14 yard dump off to DeAngelo Williams.

It was not a great quarter. But as bad as the Steelers started. There is an inevitability to their offense you just can’t deny. Steeler Nation was not sweating. If all the Redskins could get out of it was 2 field goals, they might as well have been down by 20.

Enter Brown. No that’s not a euphemism. The second quarter started the Brown-Ben connection that is the core of the Steelers team. Brown started with a 13 yard first down. After a fumble scare, Tomlin brought out his trademark risktaking to shake the last of the dust off. On 4th and 1 Ben chucked a rainbow up to Brown for a touchdown. Steelers up 7 to 6.

DeSean Jackson was determined to have a great night of his own though. He caught a deep pass from Cousins for 33 yards. Their drive stalled shortly after and they couldn’t muster that Tomlin 4th down magic. Turnover on downs.

It was the 6 minute mark and Pittsburgh would ride out the quarter. The Steelers chipped away at the Redskins defense until they were in the redzone. Then the immaculate hot potato. Ben threw a bullet to Sammie Coates. It went past Rogers, was tipped by Dashaun Phillips of the Redskins, bounced off Sammies Coates and right back into the open arms of Eli Rogers. First NFL touchdown. Way to stay alert. 14-6.

The second half would not start off like the first. Ben tossed a 13 yard pass to Brown to kick it this half off right. Then a long 17 yard run By DeAngelo Williams got the Steelers within field goal range. 17-6.

The Redskins next drive was highlighted by a first down enabled by a fumble they themselves recovered. Fair enough. But Ryan Shazier ruined the party with an interception. He was drafted to be the lightning fast ILB who could cover the whole middle of the field in Tomlin’s zone schemes, which the Steelers committed to Monday, and he delivered in coverage.

The Steelers were at it again next drive. After a 42 yarder to Sammie Coates Ben tossed it up to Brown again who caught it over his shoulder in the endzone. Brown broke out the Key & Peele hump dance. The Steelers were penalized. It’s a 2 hump maximum. It’s in the rule book. That makes it 24-6.

The Steelers looked a little winded on the next series and the Redskins marched down the field for a Field Goal. After a Steelers punt the Redskins started the 4th quarter with a succession of big passes from Cousins capped off by a touchdown run by Chris Thompson. 24-16 Steelers. One possession game now.

Not to fear. The Steelers offense, remember? DeAngelo Williams just ate up the Redskins defensive line with a little help from Brown and Coates. Then he cut between two Redskins players and darted into the endzone. 31-16.

Then Redskins turnover on downs. Next was more DeAngelo Williams with a pinch of Brown. And Williams scoots into the endzone off a couple blocks from David DeCastro and Jesse James. 38-16.

Finally, the game ended with a James Harrison interception.

Overall, it was a nice start to the season for the Burgh. It was a slow start and Cousins did get 330 yards, but they owned the last 3 quarters and Cousins had no touchdowns and 0 interceptions, plus letting him throw underneath was part of the strategy.

The defense played solid against the run, giving up only 55 yards as well. They got 0 sacks but didn’t really bring the house too often. Turnovers were nice. Ryan Shazier was the standout on defense getting 6 tackles, an interception and a forced fumble. He left the game early … ya, let’s not dwell on that right now. Happy thoughts.

The offense was dynamite. Ben got 300 yards and 3 touchdowns. Antonio Brown got himself 126 of those yards and 2 of those touchdowns. Eli Rogers had a nice start with the team catching 6 for 59 with a touchdown. Coates proved a long yardage asset and James proved a short yardage asset.

Williams however had 143 yards and 2 touchdowns along with 28 through the air. The Steelers bet the Redskins couldn’t stop Williams. They were right.

Next: Steelers vs Redskins: What to Watch For

Great start to the season for the Steelers. That 30 points per game might be below par for them. By the end of the season the offense should be stocked with Wheaton, Bell, and Ladarius Green. This is Pittsburgh in low gear. Good to have you back football.