Steelers survive late comeback attempt, win 50th Monday Night Football game all-time, stave off Bears at home 29-27

By Joshua Hertz, Sports Director — The towels were out in Pittsburgh, as the Steelers(5-3) survived a late comeback from the visiting Chicago Bears(3-6) to extend their streak to four wins in a row. The Steelers continued to run the ball well behind Najee Harris, who had 62 yards and a touchdown while quarterback Ben Roethlisberger also supplied 205 yards and 2 touchdowns in the air. The Bears benefitted from the return of running back David Montgomery, who had missed the previous 4 games with a knee injury, who provided 63 yards on the ground. Justin Fields had a solid performance in his seventh career start, passing for 291 yards, a touchdown and an interception while also picking up 45 yards on the ground. The key to the game was the defense, which both frequently pressured the quarterbacks. Pittsburgh had 3 sacks, all supplied by star linebacker T.J. Watt, moving him to second in the league this season with 11.5. The Bears pass rush was also successful, racking up 4 sacks. 

The Steelers struck first behind a 10-yard touchdown run by Najee Harris early in the first quarter. Late in the first quarter, Steelers veteran defensive end picked off a Justin Fields pass to set up great field position for Roethlisberger and Co. The Steelers capitalized on the opportunity, with Roethlisberger finding tight end Pat Freiermuth in the endzone for a 4-yard touchdown early in the second quarter. Both teams remained stout on defense, and the Bears were held to a field goal just before halftime to bring the score to 14-3. 

Early in the third quarter, Fields had the longest completion of his career, finding Marquise Goodwin for 50 yards to put the Bears in the red zone. A costly holding penalty negated a potential touchdown pass from Fields to veteran tight end Jimmy Graham, and after a big stop by Pittsburgh the Bears were forced to settle for a field goal. The Steelers answered late in the third, with Roethlisberger finding Freiermuth for his second touchdown of the night, but Chris Boswell missed the extra point, giving Pittsburgh a 20-6 lead going into the fourth. 

To open the fourth, Fields found Graham for 28 yards to set up a 15-yard wildcat touchdown run by wide receiver Darnell Mooney to cut the Steelers lead to only a touchdown. The Steelers increased their lead with a 54-yard field goal by Boswell, who is back this week after suffering a concussion on a trick play during Pittsburgh’s win last week against Cleveland. On the ensuing kickoff, Boswell recovered a fumble by Bears kick returner Jakeem Grant to give the Steelers back the ball in Bears territory. After the Steelers and Bears both went three and out, Steelers punt returner Ray-Ray McCloud fumbled the ball, which Bears safety DeAndre Houston-Carson scooped up and ran 25 yards for a touchdown. Cairo Santos made the extra point to cut the Steelers lead to 23-20 with 6:31 remaining in the game. After a 3rd down stop on a sack by Bears linebacker Cassius Marsh, a questionable taunting call against Marsh gave Pittsburgh a new set of downs. With this second chance, the Steelers pushed the ball just enough further to set up a 52-yard Boswell kick to take a 26-20 game with 2:52 remaining. Coming out of the 2-minute warning, found Allen Robinson for a big 16-yard pickup before finding Darnell Mooney on the next play for a 16-yard touchdown with 1:46 remaining. Santos hit the extra point to give the Bears their first lead of the game. On the next drive, Roethlisberger patiently drove the Steelers into field goal range, setting up a 40-yard Boswell kick with 26 seconds remaining to give Pittsburgh the 29-27 lead. In the final drive, Fields and Co. drove the ball to just past midfield to set up a 65-yard attempt for Santos, which falls short of the crossbar to end the game

Classic Showdown 

A historic matchup between two of the older franchises in the NFL, this game marks only the 28th meeting between the two teams, who have played in different divisions or conferences through their entire existences. 

Rookie Report 

The Chicago Bears continue to start rookie quarterback Justin Fields over veteran Andy Dalton after a big game in last week’s loss to San Francisco. The Steelers run game continues to be run through rookie Najee Harris, who has had an impressive season so far, and also starts rookie center Kendrick Green and offensive tackle Dan Moore Jr. 

Penalties Add Up 

The Chicago Bears found themselves in trouble with referees, especially late in the game, with 12 penalties costing them 115 yards. 

Up Next 

The Steelers(5-3) will stay home next Sunday when they host the winless Detroit Lions(0-8) The Bears(3-6) will get a bye after losing their fourth straight game this week, before hosting the AFC North leading Baltimore Ravens(6-2) in Week 11.


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