But then DeShone Kizer was given time to work and tied the game up at 7-7 heading into the second quarter. Ben Roethlisberger connected with Jesse James for a four-yard touchdown, capping the 91-yard drive, which would send the Steelers into the locker room at halftime up, 14-7. QB Cody Kessler, who is 0-8 as a starter last season with the Browns past year, was inactive.
The Pittsburgh Steelers reportedly made a reasonable contract offer to Le'Veon Bell before the deadline for franchise tagged players passed, but the star running back wants to blow the market for his position out of the water.
Bell's obvious early-game rust loomed large in a very un-Steeler-like performance of 43 rushing yards entering the two-minute warning.
Penn State Beats Pittsburgh 33-14 in Keystone Classic
But it was 33-14 on the Beaver Stadium scoreboard and that's all that mattered to head coach James Franklin . I thought [the reception in the third quarter] was going to be a touchdown when I saw the one-on-one route.
Ben Roethlisberger won his 11th game here, becoming the stadium's career wins leader as a visiting player, but the true catalysts were his All-Pro receiver and third-year tight end. The Browns took advantage and closed the gap to 14-10, courtesy of a 24-yard field goal by Zane Gonzalez.
His biggest mistake, though, came in the third quarter when he misread coverage and threw to an area where Watt was waiting. It was the first time the Steelers blocked a punt for a touchdown since 1998 against the Kansas City Chiefs.
Held to 66 yards and three first downs (one via penalty) over the first four series, the Steelers put together a touchdown drive late in the half. Anthony Chickillo will get the start if Dupree does not play.
Roethlisberger passed for 263 yards.