Sunday, October 17, 2010
Rapid Reaction: Steelers 28, Browns 10
By James Walker
PITTSBURGH -- Here are some thoughts on the Pittsburgh Steelers' 28-10 victory over the Cleveland Browns:
What I liked: Steelers (4-1) quarterback Ben Roethlisberger experienced some early rust but heated up in the second half. He brought several big plays back to Pittsburgh's offense and finished with 257 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. For Cleveland (1-5), its defense was scrappy and did its best to keep the game respectable. In his NFL debut, Browns quarterback Colt McCoy (281 yards, one touchdown, two interceptions) made rookie mistakes but played better than expected against the Steelers in what was a good learning experience.
What I didn't like: The Browns once again got sloppy in the second half and allowed 21 of Pittsburgh's 28 points after intermission. Cleveland's offense also needs a lot of work. Teams are gearing up to stop running back Peyton Hillis, so Cleveland is struggling to put together consistent scoring drives and needs to adjust.
Injuries of note: Browns receivers Josh Cribbs and Mohamed Massaquoi suffered a big blows to the head by Steelers linebacker James Harrison and didn't return. They likely suffered concussions, and the head injuries will be something to monitor during the week. Massaquoi is Cleveland's No. 1 receiver on the depth chart and Cribbs plays a big role in Cleveland's offense and special teams. The Browns will be severely limited on offense if both players have to sit out more games.
What's next: The Steelers will face a stiffer test against the Miami Dolphins on the road. It will be Roethlisberger's first road game since violating the NFL's personal conduct policy. He received a warm welcome in Pittsburgh Sunday but could get heckled next week. The road doesn't get any easier for the Browns, as they will face the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints. The game could mark McCoy's second career start, as veteran quarterbacks Seneca Wallace and Jake Delhomme will continue to rehab ankle injuries.