The National Football League saw the team with the currently the worst record in the league this season, the Cleveland Browns, host the Pittsburgh Steelers in an AFC North clash that has usually resulted in a Steelers win for most of their storied past. Sunday afternoon did not offer a different outcome as the Steelers put up 24 points against the Browns' nine and stopped their skid of four straight losses.
Harrison leads the way for the Steelers defense
After a rough few weeks, the Steelers defense answered some of their critics with their performance today. Linebacker James Harrison became the Steelers all-time sack leader when he sacked Browns' quarterback Josh McCown in the third quarter as he underlined the good performance that the Steelers defense put in today. No matter which quarterback they faced, the Steelers defense was sharp and proactive on every snap and thus, limited the Browns to just one touchdown and one field goal the entire game. Their eight total sacks was also the most by the Steelers defense since 2005.
Harrison was ably supported by his defensive teammates as the Steelers pass rush tormented the Browns and picked up seven sacks on the day, one which ended up as a defensive touchdown when nose tackle Javon Hargrave got to the ball after linebacker Ryan Shazier had got to McCown in the end zone. The Steelers secondary also had a good day out as corner back Artie Burns picked up his first NFL interception in the first half. The Steelers secondary also kept tight marking on the Browns receivers and did not allow any of them to go over 100 receiving yards in the game. The Steelers secondary also helped keep the Browns down to 33% in red zone completion and 26% in third down conversions which allowed the Steelers offense to stay on the field longer and take over the game.
Bell has another big day for the Steelers offense
With so much time in possession, the Steelers offense were bound to capitalize on this and they did just that through their running game. Their offensive line stood strong and allowed Le'Veon Bell to find pockets and gaps to exploit as he ended the day with 146 yards and a touchdown. Bell used his patient running to wear down the Brown's defense and keep the Steelers offense on the field for most of the game as they ended up with 33 minutes and 58 seconds out on the field.
Wide receiver Antonio Brown did not have a huge day but it was not needed due to Bell's running. Brown had 76 receiving yards overall and the next best number of yards was by Eli Rogers who had 50 receiving yards. It was a day where the Steelers offense had to keep the chains moving as their defense did the work and Pittsburgh will want to see more of these games from their defense as the Steelers try to book their place in the post season.