The Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns were both heading into Week 11 looking to stop losing streaks. The Steelers traveled to Cleveland with a 4-game losing streak, and the Browns had yet to win a football game.
In Week 11, along the shores of Lake Erie, the weather certainly played a factor in the football game. Swirling winds and cold would limit the pass attack for both teams, but the first half was nothing but Le’Veon Bell for the Steelers. Bell was able to gain 85-yards on the ground, adding 50-yards receiving, all in the first half of the football game.
Thanks to two short-range Chris Boswell field goals, the Steelers took a 6-0 lead late into the second half. As they dominated time of possession, Ben Roethlisberger led the team to the Cleveland goal line with just 5 seconds remaining in the game. The pass thrown to Antonio Brown fell incomplete, but a defensive holding call led to one untimed play. Rather than kicking the field goal and heading into halftime with a 9-0 lead, Mike Tomlin and company decided to go for the touchdown. Another defensive penalty gave Pittsburgh another shot at a touchdown, and Bell punched it in for the score.
To add to the gutsy decisions, the team went for the two-point conversion, and converted, taking a 14-0 lead into halftime, and getting the ball to start the second half.
The second half had more of the first, with Pittsburgh dominating time of possession, and the score, but after Lawrence Timmons hit quarterback Cody Kessler late, knocking him from the game, Josh McCown came into the game and gave Cleveland a much needed spark. McCown took over and orchestrated two scoring drives, one a field goal and another a touchdown pass to Gary Barnidge.
Heading into the fourth quarter, the Steelers were clinging to a 17-9 lead, thanks to a missed point after touchdown by Travis Koons. However, as good as the Steelers offense was in the first half, they were ice cold in the second.
After blowing a chance to ice out the game with 5 minutes remaining, it was the defense who made the necessary play. Ryan Shazier forced McCown out of the pocket and forced a fumble, which was recovered by Javon Hargrave for the Steelers touchdown. The Chris Boswell point after touchdown made the score 24-9.
The score would stand, giving Pittsburgh their 5th win of the season, ending their losing streak, and plummet Cleveland further down the standings after their 11th straight loss.
The Steelers have a short week ahead of them as they travel to play the Indianapolis Colts on Thanksgiving night in Week 12 NFL action.