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Steelers Gameday

FINAL: Steelers 17, Kansas City Chiefs 7




2:00 Marcus Allen drills Kansas City tight end Blake Bell, knocking the ball loose. Tegray Scales falls on it. That should put the result out of question.

4:22 That one is going to count. Hodges finds Johnson for 24 yards, in between defenders down the left-side numbers. The officials reviewed Johnson’s diving catch, but it withstood scrutiny.

Boswell’s extra point is good. Steelers drive went 10 plays, 80 yards and took 5:48.

10:10 Devlin Hodges is in at quarterback for Pittsburgh. Dobbs finishes going 6 of 11 for 95 yards with an interception.

12:47 Rookie kicker Matthew Wright connects from 46 yards out into the open end at Heinz Field to mercifully break the tie.

14:15 Diontae Johnson thought he had his first NFL touchdown, but he was called for a push-off and offensive pass interference.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin threw a challenge flag and had the officials review their penalty call, the first time he’s done so under a new NFL rule.

The officials upheld the call.


9:03 Steelers doing some cross-training in the secondary. Mike Hilton moved from slot corner to free safety, Cameron Sutton moved from slot corner to outside corner and Kameron Kelly moved from free safety to slot corner.


Mason Rudolph 10-15, 77 yards
Chad Henne 7-14, 96 yards

James Conner 6 carries, 28 yards
Darwin Thompson, 4 carries, 30 yards

James Washington 3 catches, 73 yards
Deon Yelder 2 catches, 31 yards


0:11 An ill-advised throw by Josh Dobbs was intercepted and nearly returned for a touchdown. He made a nice tackle to stop a score, but went 0-for-2 in two tries in the two-minute drill.

0:28 Steelers drive stalls despite a long pass from Dobbs to Washington, but he’s going to get another shot. Henne fumbled the snap and Tuzar Skipper falls on it.

1:04 Josh Dobbs is in at quarterback to rn the two-minute offense.

Rudolph finishes 10 of 15 for 77 yards.

1:11 Chiefs get the score back before the half on a 17-yard pass from Chad Henne to Mecole Hardman, a second-round pick out of Georgia.

Extra point is good. Scoring drive goes 13 plays, 81 yards in 5:26 and sets up the Steelers with a two-minute offense opportunity.

6:11 Looks like the Steelers’ top backs and receivers are done for the day.

James Conner: 6 carries, 28 yards; 1 catch, 6 yards
JuJu Smith-Schuster: 3 targets, 0 catches
Donte Moncrief: 1 target, 1 catch, 1 yard, fumble
Vance McDonald: 1 target, 1 catch, 5 yards

6:39 Jaylen Samuels gets on the board with 14-yard scamper around the left side. The Steelers have been hitting the outside edges for good gains all night.

Chris Boswell hits the extra point. Scoring drive went 14 plays, 89 yards in 8:06.


7:26 The Steelers were hoping for a nice test from the Kansas City first-team offense, and Andy Reid said they might play a half, but Patrick Mahomes lasted just two series. Chad Henne in at quarterback and promptly sacked by Bud Dupree.

7:41 Steelers give it right back. Donte Moncrief coughed up the ball after a short completion from Rudolph. It is wet out there. Steelers had uncharacteristically mild weather throughout training camp. Haven’t had a ton of wet ball work.

7:54 Artie Burns and Terrell Edmunds forced a fumble after the Steelers were badly out-manned on a running play to their side of the field. Burns was the only unblocked black shirt at the point of attack and stood up Carlos Hyde. Edmunds ripped the ball out.

Turnovers have been a point of emphasis for the Steelers’ defense all season.

9:33 Steelers punt for the second time, one from each punter. Jordan Berry took the first rep, backup Ian Berryman took the second. Just 37 yards for Berryman.

11:09 Even though he’s dressed, there was no Devin Bush in the Steelers’ first defensive drive. He took warmups and is on the sideline in uniform, but doesn’t appear to have a helmet.

Bush missed some time in practice this week and Mike Tomlin suggested he could be dealing with an injury.

15:00 Steelers starters:

QB Mason Rudolph
RB James Conner
TE Vance McDonald
TE Xavier Grimble
WR JuJu Smith-Schuster
WR Donte Moncrief

LT Alejandro Villanueva
LG Ramon Foster
C B.J. Finney
RG Matt Feiler
RT Chukwuma Okorafor

DE Stephon Tuitt
NT Javon Hargrave
DE Cameron Heyward

OLB T.J. Watt
ILB Mark Barron
ILB Tyler Matakevich
OLB Bud Dupree

CB Steven Nelson
CB Artie Burns
FS Sean Davis
SS Terrell Edmunds


8:30 p.m. The Chiefs won the coin toss and will defer to the second half.

The Steelers prayed as a team before taking the field and the whole stadium offered a moment of silence for Darryl Drake.

8:00 p.m. The NFL doesn’t do official inactive for preseason games, but following players do not appear dressed for tonight’s game:

QB Ben Roethlisberger
TE Zach Gentry
TE Christian Scotland-Williamson
OL David DeCastro
OL Maurkice Pouncey
LB Vince Williams
LB Sutton Smith
LB Ola Adeniyi
CB Joe Haden

7:35 p.m: Make it 15 more minutes, as the Steelers have announced an 8:30 p.m. kickoff. The fans are filtering back into the seating area.

7:30 p.m: Kickoff has been rescheduled for 8:15 p.m., a delay of 40 minutes.

7:00 p.m: With a heavy rain coming down and storms into the area, the Steelers have cleared the field during warmups and delayed the kickoff of tonight’s game.

The Heinz Field staff has also cleared the stands, moving fans.

A time for kickoff, originally scheduled for 7:35 p.m., has not been announced.


Saturday, August 17, 7:35 p.m.

Heinz Field, Pittsburgh

SN Coverage: Alan Saunders, Mike Asti

TV/Radio: KDKA-TV (Pittsburgh) and NFL Network (Nationally), Steelers Radio Network (102.5 WDVE-FM)


Party cloudy, 83 degrees at kickoff.


• Mason Rudolph will get the start after backing up Josh Dobbs in Week 1 as the two continue to battle for the backup quarterback job. Dobbs is also expected to play, as is fourth-stringer Devlin Hodges.

• Mike Tomlin started just three of his 22 first-team players against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week. He said he’ll play more this week, but declined to get into specifics.

• The wide receivers unit should be close to full strength, with free agent signing Donte Moncrief and rookie Diontae Johnson both returning to practice this week after missing last week’s game. Moncrief has played X receiver opposite JuJu Smith-Schuster, and should be a first-week starter, but Johnson has played just about everywhere. It will be interesting to see how the Steelers work him in.

• The team will debut its season-long memorial tributeseason-long memorial tribute to wide receivers coach Darryl Drake, who passed away on Sunday. Expect there to be a moment of silence and other, individual tributes, as well.


OUT: OLB Ola Adeniyi, who had surgery on a torn meniscus on Friday and is expected to miss two to four weeks.

QUESTIONABLE: Players that did not practice Thursday include CB Joe Haden (foot contusion), RG David DeCastro (soreness), TE Christian Scotland-Williamson (upper body), ILB Vince Williams (hamstring).

ILB Devin Bush (undisclosed), C Maurkice Pouncey (undisclosed) and OLB Sutton Smith (abdomen) also missed time in practice this week.


The Chiefs will have a new-look defense this season in the form of a 4-3 scheme installed by first-year DC Steve Spagnuolo. (Arrowhead Pride)

One player that’s benefitted from the change has been DL Breeland Speaks, who has moved from 3-4 outside linebacker to 4-3 defensive end.

But it seems like former third-round pick Dorian O’Daniel is not high on his priority list when it comes to inclusion into the new defense. (Arrowhead Addict).

The Chiefs have ruled out wide receivers Gehrig Deiter and Davon Grayson, H-back John Lovett and defensive back Michael Hunter. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes and the rest of the starts are expected to play one half. (Kansas City Star).


Five Steelers to Watch in Preseason Week Two

Saunders: Steelers Leaders’ Show True Ability in Response to Tragedy

Report: Steelers LB Ola Adeniyi to Miss At Least 2-4 Weeks with Torn Meniscus

Steelers Sign Two, Including Char Valley, Duquesne Alum Christian Kuntz

Mason Rudolph to Start for Steelers against Kansas City

Steelers OL Alejandro Villanueva On Life, Death, Football

Mike Tomlin Evaluates Performance of Rookies Devin Bush, Justin Layne, Ulysees Gilbert

Mike Tomlin, Steelers Begin Process of Moving on after Death of Coach, Friend Darryl Drake

Steelers WRs Grieving Loss of ‘Amazing Role Model’ in Darryl Drake

Steelers Coach Darryl Drake Passes Away at 62


Steelers Playoff Hopes on the Precipice after Loss to NY Jets



It was early in the second quarter of the game between the Steelers and NY Jets when it appeared that the Devlin Hodges era had reached its inglorious end following his second interception of the first half, a “duck” near the pylon putting the kibosh on a promising Steelers drive. That pick took points off the board. The next possession Mason Rudolph found himself back under center running what’s left of the offense.

But that wasn’t the end of the story. With Mason Rudolph forced out with an injury as the fourth quarter began, it would again come down to the undrafted quarterback out of Samford.

This time there was no magic, as the offense was unable to do much of anything at all without Rudolph, who lasted less than a half and Conner, who left in the second quarter.

The Steelers defense opened the game by giving up a quick touchdown as the Jets smartly mixed passes and runs down the field. Darnold threaded a perfect pass over Terrell Edmunds and Joe Haden for a 23-yard touchdown to Robbie Anderson for the score.

After rushing the ball six times for 32 yards, James Conner left the game in the second quarter with a thigh injury depleting the Pittsburgh offense even further. The oft-injured running back did not return.

With Rudolph leading the offense again for the first time since week 12, the Steelers largely abandoned the running game. It worked, the second-year quarterback completed nine of 12 passes for 105 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions in less than a quarter of action.

Late in the first half, soon to be defensive MVP TJ Watt sacked and stripped Sam Darnold and recovered the fumble for good measure to put the Steelers in business with under a minute left, trailing 10-3. Following a defensive penalty that gave the Steelers a first down with just nine seconds left, Rudolph found Diontae Johnson in the endzone for a 29-yard touchdown, tying the game going into halftime.

Steelers started off the second half with the ball, looking for their first lead of the game but were forced to punt after picking up just one first down. The Jets were then able to move the ball methodically to midfield before Darnold hooked up with Trevon Wesco, who was completely uncovered, for a 32-yard gain to the 19 yard line. The drive stopped there but a short Sam Ficken field goal put the Jets back in front, 13-10.

The rest of the quarter was a special teams battle as neither team was able to do anything on offense. At the start of the fourth quarter, the Steelers gifted the Jets a first down by jumping into the neutral zone on a 4th-and-five. But Darnold and the New York offense were unable to move the ball any further.

Then, seemingly without warning, Duck Hodges received the call again after Rudolph was unable to continue at QB following an apparent shoulder injury.

Hodges and company drove the field, getting into field goal territory before a sack and a bad snap knocked the team back and forced a punt.

Darnold and the Jets were up to the challenge, quickly driving into Steelers territory. An 11-yard scamper by Le’Veon Bell on 3rd-and-14 at the 35 gave Sam Ficken an easier field goal attempt and he converted giving the Jets a six point cushion.

With 3:11 left in the fourth quarter and the Steelers needing a touchdown, it was up to Devlin Hodges once again. However, a short run, a sack and an incompletion left the Steelers on life support.

The ball back in the hands of the NY Jets offense and the season on the line, the Pittsburgh defense held, forcing a quick three and out and burned only 20 seconds on the clock.

A 28-yard punt gave the Steelers life, and the ball at the 40 with 1:27 left in the game. But after a single first down, the Steelers stalled and an incompletion on 4th down ended the game.

Both teams were disciplined, with only seven combined penalties between them. The Steelers committed one more penalty (four to three) for 34 yards to 30 for the Jets. The teams had almost identical offensive numbers, 263 yards for the Jets to 260 for the Steelers. The Steelers had 185 yards passing to 174 and 75 rushing yards to 85 for the Jets.

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From the Locker Room: Heyward, Hodges, Edmunds on Losing as a Team



PITTSBURGH – It was a funeral-like atmosphere in the Pittsburgh locker room following the Steelers 17-10 loss to Buffalo. A national audience witnessed the Steelers fail to win a game that could’ve basically secured them a spot in the playoffs and they weren’t making any excuses after the game.

Cam Heyward, who takes pride in being one of the most vocal leaders on the team, made it very clear he isn’t supporting any opinion that revolves around blaming only the offense for the loss to the Bills.

“We should’ve got off the field more,” was Heyward’s emphatic response to a question about if he was frustrated with the offensive turnovers. The veteran defensive end was making reference to the defense not getting enough stops in a close game.

It’s expected that a leader like Cam Heyward isn’t going to allow one player, or even one unit, to take all of the blame. But quarterback Devlin Hodges, who threw 4 interceptions on the night, also knows he needs to be better. Hodges put the game on his shoulders, but then mentioned how several of his teammates came up him to express their support moving forward.

Despite the loss, safety Terrell Edmunds can still appreciate how special it was o play against his brother Bills linebacker Tremaine Edmunds on Sunday Night Football.

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Giveaways Costly as Steelers Fall to Bills, 17-10



PITTSBURGH — Sunday night’s game between the Steelers and Buffalo Bills was expected to be a defensive battle.

The two units came into the game among the tops in the AFC in points allowed this season. The key would be to limit mistakes in a low-scoring game.

In the end, the Steelers made one too many, as Devlin Hodges was intercepted four and James Conner and Diontae Johnson fumbled an exchange as the Steelers came up one score short, losing 17-10.

Hodges was intercepted in the end zone twice with under two minutes remaining for the final blow. The Steelers had two turnovers in the red zone, as the exchange between Conner and Johnson was fumbled at the Buffalo nine-yard line late in the first half.

Hodges was intercepted by Jordan Poyer in the end zone with 1:54 to play. The Steelers defense held, getting Hodges another shot, but he was once again intercepted in the end zone, this time by Levi Wallace, to seal the game.

The Steelers offense was unable to move the ball for much of the game, with Hodges held to 202 yards on 23 of 38 passing and the running game bottled up, as well.

In his return from a shoulder injury, James Conner had a couple of big carries, with runs of 15 and 17 yards, but finished with just 42 yards on eight carries.
The Steelers defense was stout, forcing a pair of turnovers of its own and holding Bills quarterback Josh Allen to 139 yards passing.

The Bills just took advantage of the Steelers mistakes, scoring a touchdown after a 22-yard Jordan Berry punt in the first quarter and a field goal after a Hodges interception in the third quarter.

The Bills improved to 9-4 and clinched a postseason berth, while the Steelers fell to 8-5. The Steelers will visit the New York Jets next Sunday.

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