PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Steelers defense held the Broncos down for most of the game, and got a rejuvenated running game and a pair of big passing scores from Ben Roethlisberger as the Steelers defeated Denver, 27-19 at Heinz Field on Sunday.
The Broncos failed to gain a first down on their first three drives, while Roethlisberger hit Diontae Johnson for a 50-yard score on the Steelers’ first drive, giving Pittsburgh a first-drive touchdown on consecutive games.
Staked to the early advantage, the Pittsburgh offense got the running game in a way that it had failed to in the first four games of the 2021 season.
Rookie Najee Harris rushed 23 times for 122 yards and a second-quarter touchdown on a 1-yard dive over the pile to make it 17-6 Pittsburgh heading into the halftime break.
In the second half, the Steelers took their first drive down the field and Roethlisberger hit Chase Claypool in the back of the end zone for an 18-yard score. Claypool finished with a career high 130 yards on five catches to go with the score.
The Broncos battled back, with Teddy Bridgewater picking on fill-in cornerback James Pierre for 39-yard touchdown pass to Courtland Sutton to bring the Broncos back to within a score.
Pierre got the last laugh, intercepting the Broncos’ quarterback in the end zone with under 30 seconds to play to seal the victory for Pittsburgh.