Pittsburgh received the football to start the third quarter, and not much changed from the first half to the second. After consecutive first downs, the Steelers were forced to punt the ball back to the Bengals without putting any points on the board. For the first time in the game, the Steelers’ defense forced a Bengals punt, giving the ball back to the offense without surrendering points.
The following drive had a promising starts, with first down passes to Diontae Johnson and Najee Harris, but it was a sack fumble, recovered by Cincinnati, which ended the drive abruptly. It was Roethlisberger’s third turnover of the game.
Cincinnati’s offense was able to turn the fumble recovery into a field goal, making the score 34-3 with 2:35 left in the third quarter. After a Steelers three-and-out, the Bengals had the ball and were moving at the end of the 3rd quarter.