Steelers PostGame Commentary: Week 7 vs Titans
By COMON Network Team
Final Score – Pittsburgh Steelers (5-0) 38 def. Cleveland Browns (4-2) 7
The Steelers jumped out to a 24-7 halftime lead and endured a scare, but held on against the Titans on the road to move to 6-0 by a final of 27-24.
The Steelers got the ball first and marched to the tune of 16 plays, 75 yards and 9:18 off the clock to cap the drive with seven points. Diontae Johnson caught an 11-yard touchdown from Ben Roethlisberger to open the scoring for Pittsburgh’s first opening-drive touchdown since Week 15 against New England in 2018. They’d keep the foot on the pedal then. After a three-and-out, the Steelers once again walked down the field and doubled their lead on Benny Snell Jr.’s one-yard score.
The Titans scored with 5:29 left in the second to make it 14-7 on a Corey Davis four-yard reception from Ryan Tannehill. Chris Boswell connected from 38 yards with 2:54 to go in the half before the Steelers took advantage of a late, big punt return by Ray Ray McCloud and once again, Roethlisberger found Johnson for a touchdown, making it 24-7.
The Steelers got their final points from Boswell’s 30-yard field goal with 10:29 to play in the third before AJ Brown caught a 73-yard score, Stephen Gostkowski hit from 51 and Derrick Henry scored from a yard out. Gostkowski, with a chance to tie the game in the closing seconds, missed right from 45, giving the Steelers the win and Tennessee its first loss of the season.
COMON Network Team Commentary
- Tale of Two Halves. Even in the win, what a miserable second half? My poor mother was close to a heart attack. It was a dominant first half and it was the total opposite in the second half. There’s a ton of people out there saying “well they should’ve lost!” Well, they didn’t. Sorry to disappoint. The Steelers are 6-0. What a matchup awaiting next week.
- Tip Drill. A lot of tipped passes today. Multiple turned into danger for Pittsburgh as two of them became interceptions. Coming into today Ben had just one interception and he had three today alone. Bad decisions turned into mistakes that nearly lost the game. This was really the first time we’ve seen these mistakes and the Steelers still found a way to get it done. The first half play deserves all the credit.
- What great teams do. The Steelers’ second half performance was abysmal. While the first half was dominant, you occasionally get halves like we saw in quarters three and four. The Steelers displayed mettle. They weathered the storm. They did just enough to hold on. That’s why they are 6-0.
Player of the Game – Diontae Johnson (PIT)
- A win is a win in the NFL, and 6-0 is 6-0.
- Okay, with that out of the way… my god the second-half play calling and decision making all around the Steelers’ offense was bad. The Steelers abandoned the run for the most part, took unnecessary shots into tight coverage, threw shot plays instead of churning clock and continuing to do what worked in the first half and more. There’s something to be said for trying to put a team away, but what was the point in taking a lead like the Steelers did if you weren’t going to run the ball and help put a stamp on a dominant win? I’m one that usually will defend Ben Roethlisberger more than most, but his decisions in the second half and even the pick before halftime were not good. Three picks, including the one at the end that gave the Titans a shot that was a ball into triple-to-quadruple coverage on 3rd-and-12. That pass is not needed. It was forced. Didn’t like it at all. Roethlisberger threw 49 times in a game they never trailed and held the ball for 36:37. Not good.
- JuJu Smith-Schuster was awesome. So was Diontae Johnson, but who knows what the injury is now as he left late. That’s gotta be one of JuJu’s best games as a Steeler. Take away the fact he didn’t get into the endzone. Nine grabs, 85 yards and a lot of those yards were simply HUGE yards in the process of the game. He picked up a few first downs on the final drive that was the first time I liked the play calling all of the second half until the last play and the obvious pick play before that. What does it say about this receivers’ room that Chase Claypool and James Washington can only have one target apiece and the room still accounts for more than 25 grabs?
- More tackles for loss for the defensive unit and a huge stick by Robert Spillane that didn’t end up mattering. It wasn’t going to be easy on that side of the ball today but a lot of guys I thought were really good. To name a few: Cam Sutton (2 PD, 4 tackles), TJ Watt (PD, QBH, sack, 3 TFL), Vince Williams (10 tackles, 2 TFL, sack).
Player of the Game – JuJu Smith-Schuster (PIT)
- The Steelers are 6-0, and only once in six gamed have they put two good halves of football together. I don’t say that to downplay what the Steelers have done so far, I say it because it’s going to be scary if this team starts playing its best football. I don’t think it has happened yet.
- Despite the loss, give credit to the Titans. For 30 minutes, this game looked like it would be similar last week’s massacre. But Tennessee hung tough, and very nearly completed the comeback. They’re not undefeated anymore, but don’t think for a second that the Titans are no longer a force in the AFC.
- My player of the game is Diontae Johnson. The second year receiver is one of the best in the NFL at catching passes on third down, and he caught six of them today, including a touchdown. The Steelers owned third down today, and that’s a big reason why they won.
Player of the Game – Diontae Johnson (PIT)