With all their off-field distractions and the on-filed struggles, the Pittsburgh Steelers knew there was one cure to it all: Just Win Baby. The Steelers followed Al Davis’ advice at Raymond James Stadium and beat the 2-0 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 30-27 on Monday Night.

 

 


QB Ben Roethlisberger shook off an early interception to pass for 3 TDs and 353 yards. One of his scores went to WR Antonio Brown, who looked like himself on that 27-yard grab. But it was TE Vance McDonald who continues to prove how effective he is when healthy with a 4 catch-112 effort and a 75-yard stiff-arm-TD to set up the scoring for the Steelers. WR/KR Ryan Switzer also had a TD and WR JuJu Smith-Shuster led with 9 catches for 116 as the Steelers improve to 1-1-1 on the year.

 


RB James Conner was clutch when the team needed him as he bulldozered for 30 of his 61 yards to help seal the win for the Steelers. He’s not Le’Veon Bell, not should he try to be. Offensive Coordinator also utilized backup RB Stevan Ridley who ran for 18 yards.  

But it was the defense that stood out for the Steelers, at least for the first half. After trailing 7-6, that unit forced 3 turnovers, one of them was an interception by LB Bud Dupree who ran it in for a 10-yard TD. Rookie S Terrell Edmunds and veteran CB Mike Hilton also got picks for the Steelers who also sacked Bucs QB Ryan Fitzpatrick 3 times. 

 


But of course, the Bucs Signal-Caller didn’t make it easy for the Steelers as he brought his team back from a 30-10 deficit to 30-27. In addition to his 3 picks, he also passed for 411 yards and 3 TDs as the “Fitz Magic” almost did it again. WRs Mike Evans (137 yards), Chris Goodwin (74 yards) and TE Cameron Brate (34 yards) each caught TDs.

The main concerns for the Steelers are still the defense, who allowed 17 unanswered points in the second half, plus 13 penalties for 155 yards. And K Chris Boswell is looking unlike the Pro-Bowl kicker who won many games for the Steelers in 2017. Boswell missed an extra point and a FG in this game. So far, he’s only made one FG all season. 

 

 

With a win under their belt, the Steelers can now turn their attention to the Baltimore Ravens (2-1) in a Sunday Night matchup, and with a short week, head coach Mike Tomlin knows that he must adjust, quickly. 

Notes: ESPN reported that the Steelers are ‘listening’ to trade talks for RB Leaven Bell. Bell 27, hasn’t reported to the Steelers since being offered the $14.5 million Franchise Tag, not agreeing to a deal and broke his promise to report Week One. The NY Jets as reportedly the only team to express interest. Former Steelers and Buccaneers HC Tony Dungy was honored at halftime as he was inducted into the team’s Ring of Honor.

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

Follow him @urbanmediaRay on twitter

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.