Published: Mon, September 11, 2017
Sport | By Scott Davis

Roethlisberger, Steelers hold off Browns

Roethlisberger, Steelers hold off Browns

The Steelers opened the regular season with a 21-18 win over the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium, their 43 opening day win, which ranks first all-time in the AFC.

Veteran safety Mike Mitchell left Sunday's 21-18 win against the Cleveland Browns.

Losing sucks but as I have said, this game was a positive building block moving forward, as opposed to last year's opener when the team looked hopeless from the start.

Other than a 50-yard catch-and-run by Antonio Brown, there was a general lack of spark for the Steelers, though the Browns deserve some credit for hanging around. He finished going 20-30 with 222 yards, recording a touchdown through the air along with one on the ground.

Roethlisberger completed 24 of 36 passes for 263 yards, two scores and an interception.

Bell, who missed all of training camp and the preseason this year, is expected to get his normal playing time and workload Sunday against the Browns.

The Steelers had 62 yards of offense until the scoring drive that started at the Steelers 9.

The Steelers also committed 13 penalties for 144 yards.

On third-and-goal from the Browns' four-yard line, veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threaded the needle through a host of Cleveland defenders to tight end Jesse James along the back line of the end zone, and the extra-point try gave the Steelers a 14-7 lead.

The short video, just less than a minute in length, featured messages from several players, including Pro Bowl tackle Joe Thomas, quarterback DeShone Kizer, linebackers Jamie Collins and Christian Kirksey, and coach Hue Jackson. T.J. Watt is the starter at right outside linebacker.

On the next series, Brown drew a 41-yard pass interference penalty that set up Roethlisberger's second touchdown pass to James - a 2-yard screen on third-and-2 - for a 21-10 advantage with 5:37 left in the third. Kizer led the Browns on an eight-play, 73-yard drive that culminated in the first touchdown pass of his career, a three-yarder to Corey Coleman.

It wasn't until the Steelers final drive of the first half that the offense came to life.

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