The Pittsburgh Steelers and Los Angeles Chargers took part in a big prime time game at Heinz Field in Week 13, and the Steelers presented their loyal fan base with a huge AFC victory - for the other team.
During the game, some perform well, while others fall short of the standard. This is where the Winners and Losers column comes in. After the game, when the dust settles, we decipher who falls into which category.
This was such a strange game all around, the article is hardly as robust as it usually is, mainly because I found it difficult to pinpoint players who stood out as playing well and those who played poorly.
As always, feel free to comment on the list in the comment section below. Be part of the conversation!
Stat Line: 10 receptions, 154 yards, 1 TD, 15.4 average, 13 targets
The Pittsburgh Steelers needed a big performance from their superstar wide receiver, and they got one. The Chargers almost dared the Steelers to turn No. 84 loose, and played him with single coverage for a large portion of the game — and Brown feasted on this decision. If there were issues with the offense on Sunday night, and there were, it wasn’t because of No. 84.
Stat Line: 12 total tackles, 9 solo
The game plan was to use Fort a lot to help cover the athletic playmakers the Chargers have and use in the slot/out of the backfield. When Fort was on the field, and there were times the team kept him off for some strange reason, he was always around the ball. This might have been a career game for the journeyman inside linebacker.
Stat Line: 8 tackles, 5 solo, 1 sack, 1 TFL, 1 PD, 1 QB Hit
A lot of people have been waiting to see Edmunds show up during a game, and it finally happened. Sure, there have been moments for the rookie, but this was by far his most complete game to date. An impressive stat line, and hopefully a sign of things to come for the first round draft choice.
Stat Line: That was awful
I am not one to point to officiating for a loss, but at the same time you have to admit the officials were too involved in the outcome of this football game. The two missed calls, the false start and block in the back, resulted in 14 points for the Chargers. Throw in a few phantom holding calls, and the officials did exactly what they shouldn’t do — become a headline.
Stat Line: 29/45, 281 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT, 1 sack
The Steelers needed to play a clean brand of football, and they were unable to do that because of their “gunslinging” quarterback. Roethlisberger turned the football over, again, within field goal range — taking points off the board. When this team goes as No. 7 goes, protecting the football should be paramount.
Stat Line: Was there a return without a penalty?!
I’m pretty sure every kick return was penalized on Sunday night. While I didn’t go back and sift through all of the penalties, it sure seemed like it. Throw in Chris Boswell missing another extra point, and the team surrendering a punt return for a touchdown and the special teams units are a flaming hot pile of you-know-what.
Game Plan vs. Keenan Allen
Stat Line: Linebackers covering Allen? Really?
The first play from scrimmage set the tone. Bud Dupree covering Keenan Allen down the field and giving up a first down reception. This was just the start of a disturbing trend which had fans scratching their heads throughout the game. The game-defining moment on 3rd and 4, Jon Bostic was covering Allen, and it was an easy pitch-and-catch which essentially sealed the win.
What a strange game with so many different variables factoring into the outcome of the game. This one will have Steelers fans’ heads spinning for quite some time.