Short-handed Pittsburgh offense remains dangerous
(The Sports Xchange) - Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger didn't have some of his usual weapons when the Steelers defeated the Washington Redskins 38-16 Monday night.
The Steelers gained 435 yards anyway thanks in no small part to Roethlisberger and wide receiver Antonio Brown, but with a healthy assist from some young pass catchers and a veteran running back.
Pittsburgh is missing star running back Le'Veon Bell (three-game suspension) and wide receiver Martavis Bryant (one-year suspension).
"That was my message to the guys last night in the offensive meeting," Roethlisberger said. "We hold ourselves to a high expectation. I think people thought, 'What are you going to do without Martavis, what are you going to do without Le'Veon, without (retired tight end) Heath Miller?'
"My message was, 'Well, we've got Sammie Coates and Eli (Rogers) and all the tight ends and DeAngelo Williams.' We've got guys that can make plays and they showed it tonight."
Williams rushed for 143 yards on 26 carries, while second-year receiver Rogers had six catches for 59 yards and a touchdown. Second-year tight end Jesse James caught five passes for 31 yards, and second-year receiver Coates added two receptions for 56 yards.
The Redskins opted not to have cornerback Josh Norman shadow Brown, who finished with eight receptions for 126 yards and two touchdowns, both of which came while he was covered by cornerback Bashaud Breeland.
"Our faith is trusting (defensive coordinator) Joe Barry, (defensive backs coach) Perry Fewell," Norman said. "That's why the guys brought me here. Faith in me to do my job and not question one thing in the game plan."
Pittsburgh's second touchdown came on pinball-type play when a pass intended for Coates on a slant deflected in the end zone to Rogers for a 3-yard score. Continued...