PITTSBURGH — The Steelers overcame a sloppy, rain-soaked first half to top the Kansas City Chiefs, 17-7, in their second preseason game of the 2019 season at Heinz Field on Saturday.
The start of the game was delayed nearly an hour due to rain and thunderstorms passing through the region, and when play resumed, the sloppiness transferred from the weather to the men in pads as both first-team offenses had fumbles, the Steelers had a couple of drops and the teams combined for eight first-half penalties.
Artie Burns and Terrell Edmunds combined to pull the way away from Kansas City running back Carlos Hyde in the first quarter, but the Steelers gave it right back when Donte Moncrief coughed up the ball after a one-yard grab from Mason Rudolph.
Rudolph got the start after impressing in the team’s first preseason game, but wasn’t able to get into much of an offensive rhythm. He finished with 10 completions on 15 attempts for 75, and was finally able to lead the offense to a long scoring drive late in the second quarter.
Second-year running back Jaylen Samuels scampered 14 yards around the left end for the game’s first score, capping off a 14-play, 89-yard drive that took 8:06 off the clock.
Kansas City answered back on the following possession. With starter Patrick Mahomes, who played just two series, on the bench, backup Chad Henne hit rookie Mecole Hardman from 17-yards out with 1:11 to play.
The Steelers’ offense got two tries at a two-minute drill, but with Josh Dobbs replacing Rudolph at quarterback, couldn’t convert on either. After the first drive stalled on a failed fourth-down conversion, Tuzar Skipper fell on fumbled Henne snap to give Dobbs another shot.
But Dobbs was intercepted at the goal line and had to make a touchdown-saving tackle.. Dobbs finished 6 of 11 for 95 yards.
Most of the starters played on a few series and nearly all were out of the game after halftime.
In the fourth quarter, the Steelers got a 46-yard field goal from rookie Matthew Wright and fourth-string quarterback Devlin Hodges hit rookie Diontae Johnson from 27 yards out for his first professional score.
With the Chiefs driving late, safety Marcus Allen made a huge hit on Kansas City tight end Blake Bell, knocking the ball loose. First-year linebacker Tegray Scales pounced on it to seal the victory.
No Guaranteed Money in Dwayne Haskins’ Low-Risk Steelers Contract
Further details of quarterback Dwayne Haskins’ new contract with the Pittsburgh Steelers have emerged, demonstrating just how low-risk the acquisition is for the club.
According to ESPN’s Field Yates, Haskins’ Reserve/Future contract with the Steelers is a one-year, $850,000 deal with no guaranteed money.
No bells or whistles to Dwayne Haskins' reserve/future deal with the Steelers: 1-year, $850K, 0 guarantees.— Field Yates (@FieldYates) January 26, 2021
He's got plenty of money still due from WFT.
This was all about fit for Haskins, with a good chance to develop in Pittsburgh, while the Steelers take a zero risk flier.
Simply put, the Steelers will not be on the hook for any money if they decide to part ways further down the line. If Haskins turns out to be a diamond in the rough for Pittsburgh, they will have acquired him on a tremendous bargain.
Haskins is not getting a raw deal financially either, as he is still being paid on his four-year, $14,416,611 rookie deal with Washington. Signing with the Steelers gives him an opportunity to prove himself with a steady organization without worrying about the financial implications.
A first round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft out of Ohio State, Haskins was waived by Washington in late December after the young quarterback was photographed maskless at a strip club, in clear violation of the league’s COVID-19 protocols and mid-pandemic common sense.
Haskins was shaky over two seasons in Washington, passing for 12 touchdowns with 14 interceptions, while completing just over 60% of his passes.
The Steelers are hoping Haskins can flash the talent he showed in his final season at Ohio State, where he completed 70% of his passes for 4,831 yards with 50 touchdowns and just eight interceptions. He finished third in Heisman Trophy voting in 2018.
By signing Haskins to such a low-risk, team-friendly contract, Pittsburgh will have an excellent opportunity to determine if some of that talent is still there.
Report: Steelers Interviewing Mike Sullivan for QB Coach Vacancy
The Pittsburgh Steelers are reportedly interviewing Mike Sullivan for their quarterbacks coach vacancy, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Gerry Dulac.
A 17-year coaching veteran at the NFL level, Sullivan was most recently the quarterbacks coach for the Denver Broncos in 2018. He also has previous experience as an offensive coordinator with the New York Giants (2016-17) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2012-12).
Sullivan is currently the Director of Recruiting at his alma mater Army, a position he has held since March of last year.
Sullivan would also bring additional championship pedigree to the Steelers, having won Super Bowls XLII and XLVI with the Giants.
Former Giants quarterback Eli Manning had one of the best seasons of his career in 2011 under Sullivan, passing for a career-high 4,933 yards and 29 touchdowns.
The Steelers are looking to fill the void left by Matt Canada, who was officially promoted to offensive coordinator on Monday.
The Steelers are talking to Mike Sullivan, a long-time former offensive coordinator/QB coach with the NY Giants and Denver Broncos, about becoming their QB coach, per source.— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) January 26, 2021
Mic Drop: Rooting for Antonio Brown or Le’Veon Bell Is Easy Choice
The idea that either Antonio Brown or Le’Veon Bell will become a Super Bowl champion after Super Bowl LV isn’t exactly something that makes Steelers fans excited for the big game. With that said, Mike Asti feels deciding who to root for should be an easy choice for Steelers fans. He wants to set the record straight once and for all of why Pittsburgh fans need to stop grouping the two former Steelers together.
While they both left the franchise in a cloud of drama, Le’Veon Bell doesn’t deserve to be treated as if he committed the same kind of sins against the Steelers that Antonio Brown did.