Duck Hodges leads Steelers past the Chargers 24-17[Los Angeles Ca] In 3 of their 4 losses, the Pittsburgh Steelers lacked one main thing: Fundamentals.
Key offensive fumbles and key defensive mishaps doomed them in those losses, but in their only win of the season the fundamentals were there, and they were hoping for another fundamentally-sound game vs. the Los Angeles Chargers and they got their wish as they won 27-17.
Led by 3 rd string quarterback (and 2019 undrafted Free Agent) Devlin Hodges, the Steelers struck early and often against the Chargers Sunday night, scoring 21 points in the first half. They scored 14 of those in the first quarter as rookie Devin Bush recovered a fumble and returned it 9 yards for the score and then he intercepted a Philip Rivers tipped pass which gave the offense a short field.
James Conner then scored on a 12-yard run.The Steelers 3 rd score came from Conner again as Hodges found him on a screen pass in which he ran 26 yards into the end-zone. Their final points came on a 20-yard Field Goal by Chris Boswell, who has yet to miss this season.
The Steelers defense made Rivers miserable and shut out the Chargers 24-0 in the first half before giving up 17 points in the second half when Rivers found Hunter Henry for 2 touchdowns and Chase McLaughlin’s 38-yard Field Goal.
With over 2 minutes left, the Chargers tried an onside kick, but The Steelers Cam Sutton
recovered it while being flipped in the air. Sutton also helped seal the victory after intercepting Rivers second pass of the game. Bush finished the game with 7 tackles an interception and a return for a TD and he became the 1st NFL rookie with a fumble recovery for a TD and interception in the same game since Eddie Jackson (Chicago) vs. Carolina on Oct. 22, 2017.
Bush is also the 11th NFL rookie to do so since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger. But was injured late in the first half but returned to finish the game.Hodges (15/20,132 yards, 1 TD,1 INT)l just became the 6th true rookie undrafted QB to win his first NFL start and now is now the third #Steelers QB to win his first start as a rookie: Ben Roethlisberger (2004) and Mike Kruczek (1976) are the others.
The Steelers running game had their best game of the young season as they rushed for 124 yards with rookie Benny Snell Jr. rushing for a game-high 75. Conner had 119 total yards from scrimmage and 2 touchdowns against the Chargers: 7 catches for 78 yards, 1 TD & 16 rushes for 41 yards, 1 TD.
Rivers had a frustrating night, although he passed for 320 yards with 2 interceptions, but also had the 2 TDs to Henry, who caught 8 passes for 120 yards.
The Steelers (2-4) avoid their first 1-5 start since 1969, when they finished 1-13. They’re now on a bye and will play their next game Monday Night (October 30th ) against Miami at Heinz Field. With the loss, the Chargers are also 2-4 as they travel to Tennessee to take on the Titans next Sunday.
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