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‘He Ran Possessed Tonight’: Roethlisberger On Harris’ MNF Performance

Monday Night Football was largely about it being Ben Roethlisberger’s last game at Heinz Field. Despite the distractions, the players did well in staying focused on getting a win over the Browns. A lot of guys stepped up in the last home game of the season.

No one more so than Najee Harris though, as he had the best game of his career. The offensive line helped a lot, playing arguably their best game of the season as well. Harris though ran for 188 yards on 28 carries along with 18 more receiving yards. The rushing totals helped him eclipse 1,000 yards for his rookie season. The 188 yards set a single-game franchise rookie record, while the seasonal yardage passed Franco Harris for most by a Steelers’ rookie.

Roethlisberger mentioned what he said to Harris after the game in his postgame press conference.

“Man, I’m so proud,” Roethlisberger said after the game Monday in a presser aired on the team’s YouTube channel. “He was still sitting there when I came over here and I just told him thank you. I said ‘I’m so proud of you,’ and he is a heck of a football player.”

Harris was able to consistently get longer runs, a combination of his hard running and better blocking up front. Much like other coaches and players around the Steelers, Roethlisberger has had nothing but good things to say about Harris all season long.

The rookie now sits at just under 1,200 rushing yards before the final game of the season. As for Monday night’s win, his most notable run was the 37-yard touchdown that iced the game and assured a “W” in Roethlisberger’s last game. The 37-yarder was his longest run of the season and the longest by any Steeler in 2021.

“It’s like he ran possessed tonight. Some of the things he did [tonight] was just special and really he gave us this victory.”

Harris, Roethlisberger, and the Steelers will need a similar performance in Week 18 to keep their playoff hopes alive again. Obviously some other things need to happen, but establishing the run on offense is the key to victory over the Ravens.

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