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Knee Jerk Reactions to the Steelers 28-14 win over the Browns in Week 18

The Steelers took care of their own business to finish the season.

Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Knee-jerk reactions are immediate responses to a situation without taking the time to analyze the situation. That’s something as sports fans that we typically do. Especially if you are a full blood Yinzer, or even just a part Yinzer. As is the custom, I compile my knee-jerk thoughts and publish them immediately after each Steelers game (my son Kyle might have a few things to say as well). It’s my version of running my mouth first and apologizing later (or not apologizing at all). So with that being said, I’m going to employ that philosophy here during Week 18 of the NFL Regular Season.

1st Quarter

  • Steelers won the toss and defer to Cleveland. The kick is muffed at the 10 but missed tackles starts the Browns near the 25
  • Defense is as strong as off brand trash bags on the first play and gives Chubb 19.
  • Steelers are getting no pressure but hands to the face bails them out and sets up 2nd and 15. Quick wrap up sets up 3rd and 9.
  • Pass deflected in the secondary and the return team comes out. Defense looked just fine that drive.
  • The punter had to have missed the kick. He didn't even get it to the 20
  • Najee comes out strong with 7. And another good run. And another good run. And a run by Warren. No Heyward. Did Pickets arm fall off?
  • A drop by Diontae and a run for loss takes it to 3rd and 13.
  • Almost got that home run on the free play. 3rd and 8.
  • Diontae almost gets his first TD but was tackled at the 2.
  • Najee gets across but is ruled down on 1st and goal and Tomlin doesn't challenge it. Kenny doesn't get in on 2nd down and Najee fumbles trying to reach across the goal line on 3rd and Cleveland recovers it. Might as well have challenged the 1st play. Playoff teams don't make mistakes like that.
  • Holding bails the defense out of a big play. Then on 2nd and 17 the D decide to give up 16. Where's the sense in that?
  • Big stop on 3rd and short. That’s Loudermilk.
  • First play of the drive Diontae catches the ball, runs backwards, and fumbles. The way they're playing now I don't want them to make the playoffs.
  • Somehow the fumble was overturned.
  • Was that a GOOD jet sweep?
  • Illegal contact saves the offense from a sack and a big loss.
  • Kenny threw to the wrong shoulder. A throw to the other would have been a catch by Muth and a first down. Punt pins the Browns in the 10.
  • What does the defense do on the first play? Gets gashed.
  • CAM! WATT!
  • 0-0 at the end of the first. The other 2 games that matter are tied. Tomlin cares about 1 game only.

2nd Quarter.

  • Defense holds and forces a punt.
  • What a play by Najee! Kevin Dotson is leading the way too much and negates a 45 yd gain. What’s worse is that he didn’t even block anybody.
  • 3rd and long sucks. So does a QB overthrowing his receiver by 10 yards. Big Press getting more playing time than I'd like right now.
  • Cam is very confident he picked that. Oh, it’s not even close.
  • Heyward gets held, it goes uncalled, and the defense stays on the field. What's new?
  • Defense holds on 3rd down but so does Robert Spillane. 1st down Cleveland.
  • This isn’t even gritty football like last week. It just sucks.
  • Browns are 1st and goal now and they get the touchdown. Throwing the red flag when we were 1st and goal looks even smarter now.
  • Browns up 7-0
  • Need to score this half.
  • Gentry getting his first catch for 22 yards.
  • Cleveland has figured out the run game. The Steelers might need some...creativity.
  • PI bails out the offense.
  • The Steelers did not deserve that 1st down.
  • Referees are slow and let the run for nothing count before the 2 minute warning.
  • Back home with a 3rd and long. Now it's a delay of game because 3rd and 10 wasn't long enough.
  • Luckily Pickens can catch a ball and walks into the end zone. 7-7 with 1:47 left in the half.
  • Wallace with his 4th interception this season. Announcers jinxed Watson bad there. A minute and 11 seconds with 3 timeouts for the offense.
  • Johnson with yet another drop.
  • Pickens is special. Sideline: Property of George Pickens.
  • A little mixed up on routes. Field goal unit comes out. Boz good from 49 and the Steelers are in the lead? 10-7
  • Cleveland runs the ball and calls timeout. You need a gps to track that thought process.
  • Browns playing for a field goal. Watson dropped the snap to end the half.
  • Steelers 10, Browns 7

3rd Quarter

  • Sims takes the touch back. Offense at the 25
  • Warren getting good yards on the draw. That’s something different. Follow that with a Najee catch and stiff arm and the offense is looking good.
  • Harris is running like a mad man, carrying the offense to the 11.
  • 3rd and 9 comes along fast and Pickett gets sacked for the first time today.
  • Field goal is good. 13-7 Steelers.
  • The defense forces a Brown's to a quick 3rd long and lets Watson run for 20+. C'mon
  • So glad that was a sack.
  • Kazee jumps the slant route. Steelers take over within field goal range. What a play!
  • R-O-C-K TO THE N-A-J.
  • Announcer called the Warren play that got the 1st.
  • Ball that was batted at the line would've been a DJ TD. All of Pittsburgh wanted that, especially DJ.
  • ROCK TO THE NAJ for the touchdown!
  • Pittsburgh 20, Cleveland 7.
  • They are getting to Watson, just not finishing sacks. I missed one by Larry O typing that out. And another typing that. My eyes will be glued to my phone for the rest of the game.
  • Warren drops the pitch but Dotson falls on it.
  • End of the 3rd. Steelers 20 Browns 7

4th Quarter

  • Steeleers don't convert a 3rd and long and punt the ball to the Browns.
  • Quit letting them run the ball. That doesn't mean let them throw the ball to Cooper like that either. Don't let them do anything!
  • That roughing the passer is terrible. Why do refs hate Cam Heyward?! Acrisure Stadium is making their thoughts on that crystal clear.
  • That flag is directly responsible for that touchdown.
  • Steelees 20 Browns 14.
  • Offense needs to get this back to a 2 possession game.
  • Kenny barely overthrows Pickens to set up 3rd and long.
  • Pickens was interfered with and still caught the first down ball.
  • Had a touchdown to Sims if Kenny saw him.
  • Connor Heyward with a HUGE first down in the middle of the field. He's been worth more than a reason for Cam to stick around.
  • Another Diontae Johnson target in the red zone is tipped at the line. I guess the football gods don't like him.
  • Heyward with another huge 3rd down conversion.
  • Luckily the hold on Myles Garrett goes unseen and the PI on Pickens is called. 1st and goal from the one.
  • WATT! Derek gets his first rushing TD of the season. Going for 2.
  • A red zone attempt to Johnson in the end zone doesn't get tipped! Steelers up 28-14
  • Very important the refs caught that hold.
  • The Jig is up. Let's keep it there.
  • Cam, along with T.J. and Alex Highsmith fall on Deshaun Watson. Cam gets up looking at the refs for a flag.
  • The defense forces them to a 3rd and long. Can't play prevent because they'll go for it on 4th.
  • Browns get across midfield just before the 2 minute warning.
  • Can we take the Renegade they just played and send it to the Jets please.
  • If Minkah would have just played for the tackle he would have picked that ball off and ended the game.
  • Thanks for the hold. Good 1st and 20.
  • The Dolphins have officially beat the Jets. Acrisure is becoming both very quiet and empty. At least it wasn't Collinsworth delivering the bad news.
  • Steelers finish off the Browns with a pair of sacks. They took care of busisness but Joe Flacco will get possibly his last revenge on the Steelers. Regardless, the Steelers exceeded most people's expectations and the future is looking brighter than expected.
  • For the last time for the 2022 season... Steelers 28, Browns 14.

There you have it, my knee jerks. so I will sit on this for a day or two, analyze it and then talk about it on The Scho Bro Show Tuesday night. CAN’T WAIT!!!