The Pittsburgh Steelers dug themselves an early 10-0 hole against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but they scored 17 unanswered to close out the first half, with Ben Roethlisberger finding Antonio Brown in the end zone twice. Still, the Steelers outgained the visiting team by nearly 200 yards in the first half. Tampa Bay starts the second half with the ball, but they haven’t looked like much of a threat in a while.
Mike Glennon was good on first down for eight yards to his tight end. On second and two, Doug Martin found space on the left side of the defense to move the chains. Brandon Myers could not hold on to the short pass on the following play. Louis Murphy failed to catch the ball on second down. On third and 10, Glennon did convert down the field to Jackson across midfield.
Troy Polamalu jumped over the line, but prior to the snap, for an offside. Mike Evans beat William Gay to set up first and goal. Gay was there against Jackson on first down to influence the incompletion. On second down, Martin punched it into the end zone to tie the game at 17.
Ben Roethlisberger was long on first down on a deep ball to Markus Wheaton. Off play action, Heath Miller converted for 16 yards. From the 36, Le’Veon Bell only picked up a yard. Bell tried to cut back upfield but the cornerback made an excellent tackle to drop him for a loss. A deep pass to Antonio Brown was caught out of bounds based on the ruling on the field, but Mike Tomlin challenged again after losing one on the Buccanneers’ opening possession.
The ruling was overturned, giving Brown at least five catches for 50 yards in 20 straight games, an NFL record. After the record catch, Brown threw to Bell for a big gain around the 20-yard line.
Miller took a hit but held on for 11 yards to set up first and goal once again for the Steelers. A hold by Kelvin Beachum wiped out a touchdown pass to Miller on first and goal, but unnecessary roughness on the defense offset to replay the down.
the Steelers went to the ground this time, with Bell running up the middle for four yards down to the five. On second and goal, Roethlisberger threw incomplete to the back. On third and goal, he threaded the needle to Miller, and this time it counted, putting the Steelers over the top 24-17.
The Buccaneers were in danger of a three and out, but took advantage of Brice McCain‘s size on third down. Martin picked up a short gain on the following play, tackled by Vince Williams subbing for Sean Spence. On second and seven, Evans was stopped by Polamalu after two yards to set up third and four. Murphy brought in the pass for the first down near midfield.
After a few near-misses in recent weeks, Cortez Allen finally took advantage of a poor throw from Glennon and intercepted the ball. The receiver Evans was injured on the play, and Allen returned the ball to the 38.
Brown hauled in his sixth pass of the game for seven yards on first down to the 45. On second and short, Bell could only get one yard. Bell broke through for the first time of the second half for 10 yards to move the chains and cross midfield.
Roethlisberger missed Markus Wheaton down the right sideline on first down. On third and five, the quarterback took off, but came up three yards shy. The Steelers looked to go for it from the 37, prompting a defensive timeout. Roethlisberger ended up punting it, but a false start brought the real punter out there afterward. The punt bounced inside the 10, and the receiver then illegally touched the ball after calling for a fair catch.
Martin picked up seven on first down to the 15. The Bucs began the fourth quarter on third and one, with Martin converting. Down to the 39 on an end around over James Harrison.
Polamalu was flagged for a facemask on a tackle behind the line of scrimmage, advancing the ball past midfield. Glennon threw it away deep under pressure on first down. Mike Mitchell knocked Murphy out of bounds after five yards. On third and five, Murphy came down with a big catch into the red zone.
On first and goal, Arthur Moats was there on the short tackle on the ground. Glennon couldn’t lead his receiver to the catch on second down. On third down, the ball fell harmlessly incomplete, holding Tampa Bay to a field goal to preserve a 24-20 lead.
Wheaton was dropped for a big loss of seven yards on an end around on first down. On second and 17, Roethlisberger found Miller for 19 yards, however. From the 32, Brown got his hands on a bomb off play action but let it go off his hands. That was a drop.
On second down, Bell was buried for a loss once again. Bell somehow got the first down on a dump off pass through several defenders. Roethlisberger threw across his body on the next play to Brown for another first down.
From the 44-yard line across midfield, Bell was stopped for no gain on the ground. Roethlisberger tried a jump ball under pressure that fell incomplete. On third and long, once again, the quarterback escaped pressure but could not get the ball to Brown down the field, which would have gone for six. The Steelers were forced to punt leading only by four.
Robert Golden was flagged for a facemask on the tackle on the punt, giving Tampa Bay the ball on the 25. Murphy brought in a five-yard pass on first down. Glennon’s pass sailed high on second down. Allen was beaten for 23 to move the chains past midfield.
Polamalu and Cameron Heyward blew up a first-down run. A delay of game preceded the second and now 18 play. A false start made it 23. But Glennon found his tight end for 21 yards to make it third and short. Moats was flagged for neutral zone infraction, giving the Bucs an automatic first down.
Murphy was good for 10 on the following play. Now at the 17 after eight yards, the back got the first down inside the 15. A pass from the back fell incomplete at the back of the end zone as the two-minute warning struck.
On second down, Lawrence Timmons had his back turned to the coverage on an incomplete pass in the end zone. Third and 10, Glennon was again incomplete. Now fourth down from the 15, the pass was incomplete to Jackson with McCain on the coverage.
Bell churned out two yards on first down as the Bucs used a timeout, with one remaining. On second and eight, with 1:40 to play, a false start on the center backed it up five yards. Roethlisberger threw to Wheaton for eight yards to make it third and five. Bell was smothered for a loss on third down, forcing a punt with under a minute to play.
After a short punt, the Bucs started at the 46 with 40 seconds to play. Jason Worilds brought Glennon down on first down, but got the pass off for an incompletion. On second down, he found Murphy for 41 yards down to the five-yard line.
On second and goal after a spike, Gay was in on coverage on Jackson for an incompletion. On third and goal, however, he brought the ball in for the touchdown to win the game. The Steelers drop to 2-2 at home to a team that came into the day 0-3.