Turnovers killed the Steelers tonight, and there’s not much else to say. Despite a valiant effort to cut Chicago’s lead to 27-23 in the fourth quarter, Pittsburgh was -5 in the turnover battle and the Bears scored 24 points off of those four turnovers to prevail 40-23.
As far as Pittsburgh’s offense was concerned, they were nothing short of dreadful outside of the latter part of the third quarter. A Ben Roethlisberger fumble led to seven Chicago points, and a pick-six by “Big Ben” thrown into double-coverage gave the Bears another seven more.
The offense looked befuddled and lost through much of the first half, although Felix Jones found some running room (34 total yards on the night). Heck, had it not been for a touchdown catch of 33 yards by Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh could have entered the locker-room down 24-3 instead of 24-10.
Pittsburgh then added another turnover second half when Jones coughed up the ball on the first possession of the second half, and Chicago went ahead 27-10 after a Robbie Gould field goal. To their credit, Pittsburgh fought back to make the score 27-23 with two Shaun Suisham field goals and another incredible touchdown catch by Brown who finished the game with 196 receiving yards.
Sadly, Pittsburgh’s defense could not stop the Bears when it counted the most tonight.
Only up 27-23, Chicago mounted a 74 yard drive over 9 plays which saw Jay Cutler scamper for one first down with his legs, throw a bomb to Brandon Marshall down the sidelines, and then a perfectly placed pass to Earl Bennett in the corner of the end zone. On a night in which they could have turned the tide, Pittsburgh’s defense came up short when it came to pressuring Cutler (only two sacks) and forcing mistakes.
Chicago capped off their win when Julius Peppers returned a fumble 42 yards when the Steelers tried to erase their 34-23 deficit, and the Steelers were left with nothing but an 0-3 record and sitting -9 in turnovers for the season.
At 0-3, the Steelers will head to England this week to face a Vikings team likely out for blood after their loss at home to the Browns. So get ready for a steady diet of Adrian Peterson, Steelers fans. It is going to be an ugly one next Sunday at Wembley Stadium.
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