CLEVELAND — Nick Chubb rushed for over 100 yards and his fourth-quarter touchdown sealed a 29-17 Cleveland Browns victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers at FirstEnergy Stadium on Thursday night.
Chubb rushed a total of 22 times for 113 yards and stablemate Kareem Hunt chipped in with 45 yards on 11 carries as the Browns averaged 5.2 yards per carry against a beleaguered Steelers defense missing its top player in T.J. Watt.
In the first half, it was the Cleveland passing attack that made the difference, as backup Jacoby Brissett, starting for suspended Deshaun Watson, connected with touchdown passes to Amari Cooper and David Njoku.
But the Steelers scored two touchdowns in the second quarter. Najee Harris and Mitch Trubisky both scored on short runs to cap off long scoring drives, and a Cade York missed extra point gave the Steelers a one-point halftime lead.
The game changed in the third quarter, one what appeared to be a huge play for the Steelers offense. Jaylen Warren took a Trubisky shovel pass 35 yards down to the Cleveland 15-yard line, but Chuks Okorafor was flagged for being illegally downfield on the play.
The Steelers couldn’t convert a first down, punted with the ball at the Cleveland 41-yard line, and failed to gain a first down on the next three consecutive drives, while a York field goal put Cleveland ahead and Chubb’s touchdown put the game out of reach.
The Steelers offense struggled despite Browns defensive ends Jadeveon Clowney and Chase Winovich missing the game and defensive starters Anthony Walker Jr., Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah and Taven Bryan leaving the game.
Chris Boswell kicked a field goal with 1:48 to play to bring the Steelers to within one score, but the Browns recovered the onside kick. The Steelers got a last-second chance to score, but Harris fumbled a lateral attempt and it was recovered in the end zone by Denzel Ward for a touchdown.
Brissett easily out-dueled Trubisky in the contest, throwing 31 times and completing 21 for 220 yards and the two scores. Cooper (seven catches, 101 yards) and Njoku (nine catches, 89 yards) led the Cleveland receivers. Both touchdown passes went over Steelers strong safety Terrell Edmunds.
Trubisky finished 20 of 32 for 207 yards. Diontae Johnson had seven catches for 76 yards, but had two drops on deep third-down passes that failed to keep the Steelers offense on the field.
The Steelers will return home to play the New York Jets in Week 4. That game will have a 1 p.m. kickoff from Acrisure Stadium.