The Steelers hobbled into Thursday night’s game against the Cleveland Browns on a short week with several key injuries.
They left with even more as the Browns battered, bruised and beat the Steelers, 21-7 on Thursday night.
The Steelers lost five more regulars to injuries during the game, the offense never got on track and Mason Rudolph threw a pair of key fourth-quarter interceptions.
Rudolph threw for a total of four interceptions to go along with one touchdown and finished 19 of 40 for just 195 yards in perhaps his most disappointing start as the Steelers quarterback.
The lack of top targets was obvious as JuJu Smith-Schuster and Diontae Johnson were both forced from the game with concussions, leaving Johnny Holton and Tevin Jones as primary targets, the latter of which was just signed to the active roster on Thursday.
The final insult and injury came in the game’s waning seconds, as Cleveland’s Myles Garrett ripped the helmet off Rudolph’s head and swung it at him in a skirmish with five seconds on the clock.
The Steelers once again struggled to run the ball. James Conner left the game with a first-half shoulder injury. He left the starting duties to Jaylen Samuels, who finished with 26 yards on five carries.
Pittsburgh’s defense once again did its part, holding Baker Mayfield to 193 yards passing and Nick Chubb to 92 yards on the ground.
But the field position battle and extra possessions, combined with not earning any turnovers of their own, was too much to overcome.
The Steelers will get their extra few days to rest up for their next one. They next visit Cincinnati on Nov. 24.