The Steelers played the Cowboys in Pittsburgh on Sunday and it was a great game. In the end though, it was a little greater for the Cowboys than the Steelers.
The Steelers were looking good for a while. It was a good game. Good games are great for everyone but the team who loses. Between both teams there were 6 two point conversions attempted, none worked. Ben had a great game, Brown had a good game. In the end though, some penalties, a lack of a run game, and an inability to stop Dez Bryant and Ezekiel Elliot resulted in Pittsburgh losing.
It started off pretty favorably. Sure, Dez Bryant pulled in a 19 yard pass. Then Anthony Chickillo sacked Prescott and forced a fumble which was recoverd by Ryan Shazier. The Steelers methodically moved it another 38 yards, mostly through catches or runs from Bell until Bell took it into the endzone on a short pass. The 2 point conversion to Ladarius Green didn’t take. Pittsburgh up 6-0.
Dallas got another shot. Through a combination of short passes and solid runs from Ezekiel Elliot the Cowboys were able to get the ball to the Pittsburgh 23, they focused on the pass after that and ended up having to kick a field goal. Pittsburgh up 6-3.
After a short pass to Brown, Ben threw a 22 yarder to Eli Rogers. He then threw a 17 yard pass to Jesse James. Le’Veon Bell got loose for 16 yards, then 8, and the Steelers are suddenly on the 1 yard line. Eli Rogers caught the touchdown and the Steelers again failed to convert for 2 points. Pittsburgh up 12-3.
The next drive started with a Dallas penalty. Then there was another Dallas penalty. A 7 yard pass couldn’t make up the difference. But then a short pass was taken by Ezekiel Elliot 83 yards for a touchdown. Running backs taking short passes long distances have been a problem all years. Pittsburgh up 12-10.
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Pittsburgh had a difficult start to the 2nd quarter. Some incompletes, and Bell fumbled. The Steelers recoverd but they had to punt.
Dez Bryant caught a 16 yard pass. Then a holding penalty stalled the drive and Dallas had to kick a field goal. Dallas up at this point, score 12-13.
Pittsburgh got the ball back and used Antonio Brown to get a first down. Then Le’Veon Bell ran 11 yards. A roughing the passer call forced Ben to miss a play but the Steelers gained 15 for it. After trading a couple penalties Brown took a short pass 13 yards. The Steelers were held to a field goal and took back the lead. Pittsburgh up 15-13.
Dallas went three and out at that point. When the Steelers got it back there was only two and a half minutes left. Eli Rogers caught a 13 yard pass and then Bell took a short one 15 yards. Then Brown got a first down. The Steelers ran out of first downs and had to punt though.
But when the Cowboys went three and out the Steelers had all their timeouts. A field goal was a reasonable goal. Bell got a 13 yard pass. Then Green, his first Steelers catch, got a 9 yarder. A deep pass to Eli Rogers was reviewed and called incomplete. The Steelers settled for a long field goal, which they missed.
The Steelers opened up the 2nd half right with a 39 yard pass to Cobi Hamilton. Later on the Steelers got a pass interference call in their favor. Pittsburgh though, of course, failed to convert in the red zone and had to kick a field goal. 18-13.
Dallas took the ball back and took small chunks all the way up the field. An 11 yard Jason Witten catch was the only time they did not need all three downs to convert. Sure enough, they did though, and their last 3rd down had Dez Bryant bring it 12 yards and into the Pittsburgh redzone. The Steelers finally got a stop though when Tuitt sacked Prescott and they had to kick the field goal. Pittsburgh up 18-16.
The Steelers went three and out when Roethlisberger was sacked. The punt was returned 39 yards too. On 3rd and 11, Dez Bryant caught a 50 yard pass for a touchdown. Pittsburgh was down again, 18-23.
After a first down, a poorly executed reverse led to a 10 yard loss. The Steelers had a few gains but couldn’t make up the 20 yards and had to punt. The Cowboys then went three and out.
Brown caught a 12 yard pass, then a 20 yard pass. Then Jesse James added 10. Le’Veon Bell took it in for the score. Another two point conversion, Ben flipped it and it looked like Jesse James my grab it but Toussaint didn’t see him and darted across the field to drop it. Pittsburgh up 24-23.
The Cowboys immediately drew an unnecessary roughness call when Cockrell hit a player out of bounds. Ezekiel Elliot ran for 12 yards. Then Jason Witten got 9 yards and Elliot made it a first down. Beasley got himself a first down too. Shazier made a great stop when he darted through the line to take Elliot for a loss. But then 14 yards to Witten and 14 more from Elliot made it a touchdown. Pittsburgh down 24-29
With less than 2 minutes remaining, Ladarius Green caught a 10 yard pass. Le’Veon Bell took a short pass 23 yards. Jesse James got one for 24 yards. Then the Steelers faked spiking the ball and Roethlisberger threw it up to Brown who caught it in the endzone. The conversion failed, not a good day for those. Pittsburgh up 30-29.
Now there was 42 seconds left. Beasley caught a 10 yard pass. Witten caught a 13 yard pass. But then rookie Sean Davis grabbed the facemask of Jason Witten, quite unnecessarily, resulting in a 15 yard penalty and bringing the Cowboys in field goal range. No field goal was necessary though as Elliot ran it 32 yards, practically untouched, into the endzone. Pittsburgh down 30-35.
The Steelers tried to move the ball down the field but they needed 80 yards in 9 seconds. They didn’t get it.
Pittsburgh now has a losing record. Stairway to nevermind. The NFL’s most storied teams happened over a short few years each. Is it possible that suspensions and Vontaze Burfict trying to injure the stars made the Steelers a dynasty that never was? Too early for that. Let’s not get too down as we do, or too up as we were. Steady on like Tomlin always is. See you next week.