After a disappointing loss to the Miami Dolphins last week, the Pittsburgh Steelers entered this afternoon’s game at Heinz Field certainly as the underdog against the New England Patriots. Not only were they facing off against Tom Brady & Co, who has been unstoppable since his return from suspension so far this year, but they were also doing so without Ben Roethlisberger.
Today, after falling behind early and rallying back to make the game interesting, came up short against the Patriots today, losing by a 27-16 score.
Landry Jones drove the Steelers down the field on their opening drive, but was intercepted in the end zone. New England moved down the field on a 13 play, 80 yard drive, scoring on a 19 yard pass from Brady to James White. LaGarrette Blount scored from three yards out, capping an 11 play, 84 yard drive, and the Patriots led 14-0.
Jones & the Steelers responded with a five play, 71 yard drive to bring them back within a touchdown. Darrius Heyward-Bey caught a 14 yard pass from Jones, and after a 32 yard field goal by Chris Boswell later in the quarter, the Steelers trailed 14-10 at the half.
Boswell kicked another field goal in the third quarter, making it a 14-13 game. Brady hit Rob Gronkowski for a 36 yard touchdown, but after a missed extra point, the Patriots led 20-13. Another field goal by Boswell, this one from 44 yards out, made it 20-16. But once again, the Patriots were able to answer, capping a 75 yard drive with a five yard touchdown run by Blount.
This was a difficult matchup for the Steelers, as it always has been when they face off against Brady and the Patriots. But in order to beat this team, you must be able to score points. And without your starting quarterback, it’s awfully difficult to compete with a team of this caliber for a full 60 minutes. Unfortunately, Jones and the Steelers just couldn’t keep pace with New England in the second half.
On top of the absence of Roethlisberger, Cameron Heyward, and others, Antonio Brown was able shaken up in the second half, and was held out of several possessions down the stretch. With an injured quarterback and multiple other injuries at key positions, the bye week can’t come soon enough for the Steelers.
After a bye week next week, Pittsburgh will return to action on November 6th for a huge AFC North matchup against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium.
Overall Record: 4-3
Next Game: @ Baltimore Ravens Sunday November 6 1:00pm CBS