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Steelers go three and out after electing to receive opening kickoff, 49ers score TD

Kenny Pickett #8 of the Pittsburgh Steelers warms up prior to a game against the San Francisco 49ers at Acrisure Stadium on September 10, 2023 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ streak of opening touchdown drives didn’t extend through the preseason, unfortunately, going three and out after electing to receive the opening kickoff. Pickett started things off with a six-yard completion to WR George Pickens, but losses on back-to-back plays to follow didn’t hold up.

Among the two plays to follow were a jet sweep for second-year receiver Calvin Austin III, and a 10-yard sack to Pickett that forced a punt from Pressley Harvin III for 34 yards.

In response, the 49ers marched down the field, showing off their yards after the catch ability, punctuating the drive with a wide-open eight-yard touchdown pass from Brock Purdy to WR Brandon Aiyuk.

The Steelers are probably going to wish they had that opening kickoff drive back...