Markus Wheaton up, secondary down in Steelers' loss

Seahawks' Russell Wilson, Steelers' Markus Wheaton get game balls

Russell Wilson threw for 345 yards and five touchdowns, while Markus Wheaton caught nine balls for 201 yards in the Seahawks' thrilling 39-30 victory over the Steelers.

SEATTLE -- Here's a look at Pittsburgh Steelers players who were "up" and those who were "down" in Sunday's 39-30 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.


Markus Wheaton: Wheaton has been waiting patiently to break out, but failed to eclipse 300 yards during his first 10 games as the primary slot receiver. That changed in a big way Sunday. Wheaton recorded his first 100-yard gain, then doubled down for 201 yards on nine catches. He needed a game like this. His slot work can add a new dimension to an already-lethal offense.

Cam Heyward: Another sack, two quarterback hurries and a blocked kick to add to Heyward's growing resume. Heyward is pushing for his first Pro Bowl and might just get there. He was a positive on an erratic day for the defense.

Ben Roethlisberger: The two interceptions weren't ideal but it's hard to argue with 456 passing yards. Roethlisberger was relentless. He kept throwing -- and throwing deep -- despite constant pressure from the Seahawks front.


Landry Jones: Jones wasn't put in ideal situations, asked to execute a fake-field-goal attempt and run the two-minute drill as Roethlisberger left the game. But when two of your four passing attempts are intercepted, you belong on the 'down' list.

Steelers secondary: Russell Wilson had 13 touchdowns in his first 10 games. He had five Sunday. Plenty of blame to spread among the Steelers' starting secondary, which needed a late stop and instead gave up an 80-yard Doug Baldwin score. This is the third quarterback on the year to throw for at least four touchdowns on this group. Antwon Blake was among the defenders in coverage on the Baldwin touchdown.

Shamarko Thomas: He interfered with the punt returner for the second time this season, resulting in a penalty. It's great that he gets downfield in a hurry, but he keeps messing with the punters. It cost the Steelers field position in this case.