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Roethlisberger Knocks Rust Off; Steelers Top Titans 18-6

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The Steelers used big plays in the passing game to take an lead early, and the defense kept the Titans out of the end zone on Sunday as Pittsburgh topped Tennessee, 18-6, to improve to 3-0 on the preseason.

In his first action of the preseason, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger led the Steelers offense to one score on three drives when he hit JuJu Smith-Schuster on a 17-yard post route to cap a nine-play, 58-yard drive.

Roethlisberger finished 8 of 13 for 63 yards, finding his most success throwing to Smith-Schuster (four catches, 37 yards) and Donte Moncrief (two catches, 11 yards).

That scoring drive came right on the heels of a defensive score, as Stephon Tuitt sacked Marcus Mariota in the end zone to give the Steelers a safety. The Tennessee starter had a miserable outing, finishing 0 for 3. The Titans first-team offense finished with negative four yards on his five plays.

The second quarterback into the game was Mason Rudolph, and he continued to assert himself in the battle to be Roethlisberger’s backup.

Rudolph found favorite target James Washington on a 41-yard touchdown strike and finished an efficient 6 of 9 for 75 yards. He also had an interception on a miscommunication with Washington.

The Titans finally got on the board before the half with a 24-yard field goal from Ryan Succop and he added another chip shot in the second half.

Josh Dobbs took over at quarterback for the Steelers in the second half, although he wasn’t as efficient or effective as the first two passers. He did not lead a touchdown drive, but did drive the offense far enough for a Matthew Wright field goal. Dobbs finished 4 of 9 for 79 yards.

The Steelers will wrap up their preseason schedule with their semi-annual visit to Charlotte to face the Carolina Panthers. That game is Thursday night with a 7 p.m. kickoff.

Steelers

Steelers, Pitt Start 3-0 for First Time Since 1982

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PITTSBURGH — This year has been a trying year for many around the world and the region, but so far, 2020 has been pretty good to Pittsburgh’s football teams.

The Pittsburgh Steelers improved to 3-0 on the season on Sunday with a 28-21 victory over the Houston Texans at Heinz Field.

One day earlier on the same playing surface, the Pitt Panthers had earned their third straight win to start the season with a 23-20 win over the Louisville Cardinals.

It’s been a long time since Pittsburgh’s football fans had such a successful start to the season. The last time both Pitt and the Steelers won each of their first three games was all the way back in 1982.

Pitt’s squad, led by quarterback Dan Marino, ended up winning seven in a row that year before losing to Notre Dame and Penn State in November and SMU in the Cotton Bowl, finishing 9- and ranked No. 10 in the country.

The Steelers’ 3-0 start that season was a strange one, as the beat the Dallas Cowboys to open to the season and prevailed over the Cincinnati Bengals in overtime before the NFL players went on strike, stopping the season until late November. When play resumed, the Steelers defeated the Houston Oilers to improve to 3-0.

But Terry Bradshaw’s injured elbow limited him throughout the season and the Steelers dropped three of their next four, finishing 6-3 and with a first-round playoff loss to the San Diego Chargers.

Both teams will put their unbeaten records on the line next weekend, with No. 24 Pitt hosting NC State at Heinz Field and the Steelers visiting the equally undefeated Tennessee Titans. If they can keep their hot starts going, they’ll be equalling the 1979 season, when both teams started 4-0.

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Steelers

Steelers Postgame Show: Steelers Comeback, Run Over Texans

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Despite trailing early, the Steelers were able to comeback and move to 3-0 on the season with a win over the Houston Texans.

Host Mike Asti held a postgame show chat session with fans to cover a variety of topics: the win, a rockier day for Ben Roethlisberger at times, the emergence of Eric Ebron, Anthony McFarland and more Steelers weapons, Mike Tomlin now incorporating a running back by committee situation and even the struggles of the defense, especially the secondary.

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Steelers

Highlights from Steelers Practice 9/25/20

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It was all about wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster’s return and the Watt brothers at the final practice before the Steelers week 3 game against Houston.

Footage courtesy Pittsburgh Steelers

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