Late Turnovers Doom Steelers In 16-10 Loss To Miami Dolphins

On Sunday Night Football, the Pittsburgh Steelers looked to pick up their first back-to-back wins all year while the Miami Dolphins were attempting to snap a three-game losing streak. Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, it was the Dolphins who accomplished their goal, beating the Steelers 16-10.

Miami started with the ball, and after a false start, they lost four yards on a swing pass that Cb Arthur Maulet was all over. On 2nd and 19, WR Jaylen Waddle picked up 20 yards, and on the next play WR Tyreek Hill gained 17 yards on a reception and the Dolphins were in Pittsburgh territory. QB Tua Tagovailoa hit Hill again on the next play for another first down. After hitting TE Mike Gesicki for 18 yards later in the drive, he completed a pass to RB Raheem Mostert for a touchdown. Jason Sanders knocked through the extra point and Miami went up 7-0 with 10:45 left in the first quarter.

The Steelers responded with a three-and-out that was made worse by a 23-yard punt by Pressley Harvin III. Miami would open their next drive at their own 35 after a holding penalty against the Dolphins knocked them back ten yards. On 2nd and 5, Waddle was wide open over the middle and gained 25 yards. Two first down runs by Mostert put the Dolphins in prime position, but a big hit by S Minkah Fitzpatrick on 3rd and 4 forced a drop by Mostert in the end zone, and the Dolphins settled for a field goal. Jason Sanders was good from 24 yards, and Miami went up 10-0 with 5:32 left in the first quarter.

On the Steelers’ second play of their drive, WR Chase Claypool tripped and QB Kenny Pickett was picked off by CB Justin Bethel. Miami took over at their own 46-yard line after the turnover. On Miami’s third play of their drive, Tagovailoa connected with Waddle for an 18-yard reception down to the Pittsburgh 23 after a first down run by RB Chase Edmonds. On 3rd and 10, Tagovailoa was incomplete to Gesicki, and Sanders came out and hit a 42-yard field goal. With 2:27 left in the first quarter, Miami led 13-0.

The Steelers picked up their first first down of the night on a 3rd and 2 completion to TE Pat Freiermuth that went for eight yards. Later in the drive, Pickett scrambled for three yards on 3rd and 4, and on 4th and 1 RB Jaylen Warren picked up the first down with a four-yard run. A 12-yard reception to RB Najee Harris on the next play put the Steelers firmly in Miami territory at their 34. On 3rd and 3 from the Miami 27, Pickett was incomplete to WR Diontae Johnson and K Chris Boswell came out for a 45-yard try. Boswell was good, and the Steelers cut the Dolphins’ lead to 13-3 with 11:44 left in the first half.

Pittsburgh got their first stop of the game when Tagovailoa was incomplete to Edmonds on 3rd and 7, but they would start their next drive at their own 14 after a 48-yard Thomas Morstead punt was returned for just two yards. After a loss to TE Zach Gentry on first down, Pickett hit WR George Pickens for 30 yards and a first down. Later in the drive, Pickett and Pickens again connected for a first down at the Miami 36. After some questionable play calling, Pittsburgh faced a 3rd and 12, but Pickett was able to use his legs and scramble for 16 yards and a first down, and on the next play Harris ran hard and picked up 12 yards and a first down. Two plays later, Pickens finished off the drive with his first touchdown catch of his career, a seven-yard impressive grab. Boswell nailed the extra point, and the Steelers trailed 13-10 with 1:50 left in the first half.

Mostert muffed the ensuing kickoff, but he fell on it at the Miami 15. On the first play, Tagovalia found WR Trent Sherfield for a 32-yard gain. With 21 seconds left, Tagovailoa moved Miami to the Pittsburgh 28 with a 21-yard completion to Hill, and Miami burned their final timeout. Miami couldn’t punch it in though, and sent Sanders out for a 47-yard try. He was good, and the Dolphins went into the half leading 16-10.

Pittsburgh got the ball to open the second half, but a second down sack of Kenny Pickett set up a 3rd and 22. They went three-and-out and punted it away. Harvin’s 47-yard punt would start Miami at their own 28. A 25-yard completion to Waddle on their 3rd play of the drive moved Miami into Pittsburgh territory. An 18-yard catch-and-run by Mostert on their next play had Miami just outside the red zone at the Pittsburgh 21. Later in the drive, Miami opted to go for it on 4th and 3 instead of kicking the field goal to put them up 9, but the Steelers, led by DL Larry Ogunjobi, stuffed the run attempt by Edmonds and Pittsburgh forced the turnover on downs.

A 2nd and 10 completion to Diontae Johnson gave Pittsburgh a first down, and then Pickett went right back to Johnson for a gain of six. They wouldn’t convert another first down though, and Harvin punted back to Miami. His 43-yard punt would travel to the Miami 21, where it was fair caught by Cedrick Wilson. The Steelers forced a three-and-out though, and Morstead would punt. The Steelers’ drive would start on their own 39.

An ineligible man downfield against OG James Daniels and an offensive pass interference against Johnson forced Pittsburgh into a 2nd and 23. A short pass to Warren would make it 3rd and 16, and on 3rd down Pickett would scramble for a gain of a yard. Miami’s next drive would start on their 30. Pittsburgh forced a three-and-out, and would once again have a chance to take the lead, trailing 16-10 and with the ball on their own 18.

A 16-yard run by Harris would be the second-to-last play of the third quarter. A three-yard run on the next play would give Pittsburgh a 2nd and 7 heading into the fourth quarter. A completion to TE Connor Heyward opened the fourth, but Harris was stopped short on third down and the Steelers punted.

Miami’s drive began with an 18-yard completion to Hill, but that was all they would get, as on 3rd on 8, Gesicki was stopped short of the sticks and the Dolphins had to punt. Pittsburgh, though, responded with a three-and-out. Harvin picked a good time for his best punt of the night though, as he booted one 55 yards and Wilson was stopped at the Miami 15.

Mostert ran for a first down on 2nd and 1, but later in the drive, S Terrell Edmunds broke up a deep shot to Hill on 3rd and 3 and Miami once again had to punt. A first down pass from Pickett to Freiermuth gave Pittsburgh a new set of downs at their 40, but back-to-back incompletions made it 3rd and 10. Pickett hit Claypool for 12 and a first down, and then went to Pickens for nine yards out of the no-huddle to move into Miami territory. Another first down to Claypool gave Pittsburgh a 1st and 10 at the Miami 24 and they were threatening.

Two runs to Harris netted nine yards, and on 3rd and 1, Pickett attempted a QB sneak but the play was waived off due to an illegal shift, and it forced Pittsburgh into a 3rd and 6. Pickett attempted to scramble on 3rd and 6 but the play was called back for holding, and the Steelers would try again, this time with a 3rd and 16. On 3rd down, Pickett was intercepted by S Jevon Holland and he returned it for 33 yards. The Dolphins would have the ball at the Pittsburgh 49 with 2:57 left to play. On 3rd and 3, Tagovailoa was incomplete though, and the clock stopped with 2:35 left and the Dolphins had to punt.

With 2:31 left, Pittsburgh would start their drive on their own 13, needing a touchdown to tie and a touchdown with an extra point to win. Back-to-back passes to Freiermuth gave Pittsburgh a first down, but they would quickly face a 4th and 4 with the clock ticking. Pickett connected with Freiermuth for 21 yards, and Pittsburgh had the ball in Miami territory with 48 seconds left. After a pike, Johnson made a nice catch and run and got out of bounds for a gain of 14. After an eight-yard completion to Freiermuth, the Steelers rushed to the line and Pickett threw to the end zone was picked off by CB Noah Igbinoghene, and the Dolphins would clinch the 16-10 win.

With the loss, the Steelers fall to 2-5 on the year, and the Dolphins snap their three-game losing streak and move to 4-3. The Steelers will head to Lincoln Financial Field next week to take on the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles.

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