The Jaguars’ Rashean Mathis returned a
Ben Roethlisberger toss 72 yards for a touchdown to give Jacksonville a 7-0 first-quarter lead.
And Ben Roethlisberger held onto the ball too long and took some sacks in the second half as the Steelers’ offense came to a complete stop.
But there’s no one better these days at bringing his team back late in the game and that’s exactly what Roethlisberger did Sunday night. Starting at his own 20-yeard line and down 21-20 with only six minutes left in the game, Ben Roethlisberger
drove his team 80 yards for the winning touchdown. His perfect 8-yard touchdown throw to Hines Ward came with 1:53 left to play and gave the Steelers the win.
Twice on that final drive, Roethlisberger came through with amazing clutch passes. He had defensive end Reggie Hayward draped on his back one play and mammoth defensive tackle John Henderson breathing down his neck a few snaps later. Either one could have been a sack and would have possibly cost the Steelers the game. But Ben somehow made the throws and won the game for the Steelers.
What’s even more amazing is that Big Ben didn’t have All-Pro Willie Parker with him in the backfield. Parker missed the game with a sprained knee and his understudy first-round draft pick Rashard Mendenhall was also out with a broken shoulder. Running back Mewelde Moore, signed as a free agent in the off season, came up big with 99 yards on 17 carries, but in the end it was Ben who rose to the challenge and led the Steelers to victory.
Ben Roethlisberger also did it despite several injuries to his shoulder and hand that have bothered him all season. He shook off the injuries to complete 26 of 41 passes for 309 yards and three touchdowns.
With the performance, Roethlisberger further established himself as the best quarterback in the AFC, especially considering that Tom Brady is out for the year and Payton Manning is having an off year, There can be little doubt that he’s indeed the best signal caller in the conference.
With a 4-1 record at the bye record, the Steelers, despite having an extremely tough schedule the rest of the way, are the clear favorites to win the AFC North again. And possibly make a return trip to the Super Bowl.