NFL Game Summary - Pittsburgh at Denver|
(Monday, November 9th)
Final Score: Pittsburgh 28, Denver 10
Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Ben Roethlisberger threw for 233 yards and a
trio of scores and Pittsburgh's defense came up with three interceptions of
Kyle Orton in a 28-10 triumph over the Denver Broncos.
Tyrone Carter, starting in place of Ryan Clark, had a pair of interceptions,
returning one 48 yards for a touchdown. Troy Polamalu's pick-off set up
Roethlisberger's 25-yard scoring toss to Mike Wallace in the fourth quarter.
Roethlisberger connected on 21-of-29 passes and was picked off once as the
Steelers (6-2) won their fifth straight game. Rashard Mendenhall rushed 22
times for 155 yards, while Hines Ward had a pair of TD catches as Pittsburgh
controlled the clock in the second half. Santonio Holmes caught six balls for
93 yards for Pittsburgh, which next hosts Cincinnati in a battle for first
place in the AFC North.
"It was a tale of two halves. The first half we didn't give our defense much
rest, but we were able to keep them off the field in the second half," said
Roethlisberger. "In the second half we went to a no-huddle and they only
stopped us when we stopped ourselves; when we had a fumble and an
Clark was inactive due to a blood disorder which makes it dangerous for him to
play in high altitudes. He was forced to miss the remainder of the 2007 season
after suffering a ruptured spleen following the Steelers' last game at Denver,
in December, 2007. He also had to undergo surgery to remove his gall bladder
and lost 30 pounds before making a full recovery. After Carter's second
interception, with 15 seconds remaining, Clark jumped up and celebrated with
"I might be like Wally Pipp. I better get back fast so that I don't lose my
spot," joked Clark. "He's a friend and a teammate and he did an awesome job
tonight. I'm proud of him."
Orton connected on 23-of-38 passes for 221 yards for the Broncos (6-2), who
were coming off a 30-7 blowout loss at Baltimore. Brandon Marshall had 11
receptions for 112 yards, but Denver's running game was nonexistent as the
Broncos combined for 27 yards on the ground.
"We certainly haven't run the ball very well the last two weeks, and we had
trouble protecting the passer tonight," said Broncos coach Josh McDaniels.
"There are a lot of things that go into that, and that is not just an
offensive line thing or a tight end thing, or a running back. All 11 guys on
the field have to work together to do that, and we certainly have not done
enough the last two weeks offensively to help our team win a lot of games. We
are going to need to improve significantly in that area and continue to work
hard and get better."
Orton's pass sailed over the head of Brandon Marshall into the waiting hands
of Polamalu, giving the Steelers the ball at the Denver 25 midway through the
fourth quarter. Three plays later, on 3rd-and-10, Roethlisberger scrambled to
his right before throwing over the middle to the goal line to a wide open
Wallace for a 21-10 lead with 7:03 remaining.
Denver failed to get a first down on the ensuing possession and the Steelers
iced the win with an 11-play, 74-yard drive that chewed better than five
minutes off the clock. Ward took a bubble screen pass from Roethlisberger on
the right side of the field and then leaped over Broncos cornerback Champ
Bailey to score with 1:22 left.
Coming off the bye week, the Steelers fell behind 10-7 nearly four minutes in
the third quarter, but held the ball for over 22 minutes in the second half to
take control of the game.
Defensive end Kenny Peterson came around the end to knock the ball out of
Roethlisberger's hand and Robert Ayers scooped up the ball and raced 54 yards
to the end zone for a 10-7 Denver lead.
Pittsburgh needed joust four plays to respond for the lead. Roethlisberger
passes 18 yards to Wallace, Mendenhall rumbled for 24 yards and Holmes caught
a 35-yard pass to the Denver three. On the next play, Roethlisberger found
Ward in the back of the end zone.
Andre' Goodman picked up Roethlisberger in the end zone later in the third
quarter, but the Broncos failed to move the ball past midfield the rest of the
Matt Prater's 40-yard field goal capped the game's opening drive for Denver,
but Pittsburgh went ahead 2:10 into the second when Carter picked off Orton's
pass over the middle and rumbled untouched into the end zone.
"I just like the opportunity to step up and show my teammates that I can make
plays when my number is called," said Carter. "We always emphasize making big
plays to put our offense in good positions. If you score, great, but you want
to create turnovers in order to put your offense in good field position."
Denver converted a fourth down pass later in the quarter to the Pittsburgh 31,
but a holding penalty negated the chain movement and the Broncos punted.
"There is no panic here and we just have to get back to the drawing board and
do what we have to do to make those proper adjustments," said Goodman. "We
have to get back to getting off the field on third down in the second half,
which we did a good job of in the first six games."
Denver plays on the road against Washington Sunday...Pittsburgh has scored at
least 27 points in five straight games, a franchise record...The Steelers
played minus defensive end Travis Kirschke (calf) and linebacker Lawrence
Timmons (ankle)...Ward had seven catches for 44 yards...New Broncos cornerback
Ty Law, signed this past weekend, had one tackle. He was matched up against
Ward most of the night.
11/10 04:28:32 ET