Yes sir. That's what good teams do. The Pittsburgh Steelers bounced back from their disappointing Week 9 loss to the Ravens with a solid 24-17 road win over the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday afternoon. Credit the Bengals for starting the second half off well to level the score at 17-17, but really that was the only stretch of the game where the Bengals looked like they were in the same class as the Steelers. A couple quick talking points for our celebration thread. Much more later in the day and throughout the week:
- Finally the Steelers win the turnover battle thanks to two interceptions. The first, by Lawrence Timmons, came off a lucky carem that landed in Timmons' arms a good 7 or 8 yards away from where the initial redirection of the ball occurred.
- Ben Roethlisberger: 21-33, 245 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT ; Andy Dalton: 15-30, 170 yards, 2 TDs, 2 INTs. Dalton played decently, and he certainly made some throws and decisions that I found impressive. But he's a rookie and several of his decisions reflected that reality.
- Nice game by Jeremy Kapinos. The recently signed punter averaged 50.4 yards per punt on his five kicks, with a long of 57 and one downed nicely deep inside the 20.
- I was asked on a Bengals podcast if something was wrong with Troy Polamalu. Uh, not exactly. Sure, the interceptions and highlight reel plays may be missing on the stat sheet, but he's still playing at a higher level than he was last year when he was named Defensive Player of the Year.
- I don't know why Big Ben is so allergic to throwing the ball out of bounds and away rather than willfully taking a sack so often. The Bengals were credited with five sacks on the afternoon compared to zero for the Steelers.
- Kudos to William Gay for correctly jumping the slant route late in the game and sealing the win with his interception of Dalton. Those are the plays the Steelers defense has not been making, even when playing well.
- I think it's clear why Rashard Mendenhall was a former first round draft pick and why Isaac Redman was an undrafted free agent rookie out of Bowie State. I love Redman as much as the next guy, but he is not in the same class as Mendy, period. There's still very little room to operate for the running backs, but Mendenhall's second touchdown of the game from 9 yards out was all will and strength. Mendenhall is now the eighth Steelers running back with 25 career touchdowns.