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Steelers take 10-9 lead into locker room

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 17:  Fitzgerald Toussaint #33 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates after scoring a one yard touchdown in the first quarter against the Denver Broncos during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 17, 2016 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) Getty Images

Both Peyton Manning and Ben Roethlisberger have had better days than they are having in Denver on Sunday, but Roethlisberger’s Steelers made more big plays on offense in the first half and have a 10-9 lead over the Broncos to show for it.

Martavis Bryant had a 40-yard run to set up a touchdown and Roethlisberger hit a totally uncovered Darrius Heyward-Bey for a 58-yard gain that led to a Chris Boswell field goal in the second quarter. Those plays account for 98 of the 195 yards that the Steelers picked up in the first half on a windy afternoon in Denver. Roethlisberger is 9-of-15 for 132 yards overall and has been sacked twice.

Manning hasn’t been sacked, although he took a big hit from Will Allen just before halftime, and hasn’t been all that sharp, although the day would look much better for Denver if his targets could hold onto the ball. Demaryius Thomas, C.J. Anderson, Emmanuel Sanders and Bennie Fowler have all dropped passes on the way to an 11-of-22, 99-yard first half for Manning.

Those drops contributed to the Broncos going 1-of-8 on third downs and their inability to cash short fields into more points over the course of the half. The Steelers weren’t much better on third down, but those big plays have helped make up for their six failed conversion attempts.

The tempo has been fairly deliberate on both sides and big risks haven’t been part of the game plan on either side. Another touchdown for either side could force that to change with a trip to the AFC title game on the line.

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42 Responses to “Steelers take 10-9 lead into locker room”
  1. bleck5 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:17 PM

    Denver is playing like crap. Steelers just need to make sure they keep mistakes at a minimum and keep the momentum and they have it in the bag.

  2. joetoronto says: Jan 17, 2016 6:18 PM

    It’s just a matter of time before Phghton Manning starts throwing picks.

    He looks like he’s in slow motion out there.

  3. nfliferfan22 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:19 PM

    And no mention of about 5-6 drops by Denver’s receivers! Brady would be cursing out his players which shows the difference between a class act like Peyton and well you know a jerk like Brady!

  4. coltzfan166 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:20 PM

    Denver’s receivers are not helping Peyton out

  5. it's all bs says: Jan 17, 2016 6:23 PM

    we are playing like crap BUT so is Denver…..keep a sense of humor my fellow football fans:)

  6. ohand16 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:24 PM

    Pittsburgh’s goin to the Super Bowl..

  7. mjd08501 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:24 PM

    This is a terrible football game.

  8. nhpats says: Jan 17, 2016 6:24 PM

    How long before we see Ossweiler?

  9. jason9696 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:24 PM

    Denver’s lucky they are only down by 1 point. They are playing very badly with way too many drops.

  10. noteamforlosangeles says: Jan 17, 2016 6:25 PM

    One and done for the 12th time…

  11. flickflint says: Jan 17, 2016 6:27 PM

    This Denver team the worst #1 seed I can remember

  12. TebowedOutOfThePostSeasonsAndNeverToReturn says: Jan 17, 2016 6:29 PM

    BTW, why was that not pass interference on Heath Miller there? Arms were pinned to his side not letting him even reach for the football. After that ticky-tack call against Gay what is going on out there?

  13. rjpats says: Jan 17, 2016 6:29 PM

    I’d rather the Pats play Pittsburgh, for obvious reasons, but Denver looks pretty beatable, too.

  14. walldefender says: Jan 17, 2016 6:30 PM

    Peyton just throws his o-linmen under the bus. Never heard Brady demean a teammate ever.

  15. riverhorsey says: Jan 17, 2016 6:30 PM

    When is the inefficiency of the refs regarding pass interference ever going to be brought to the floor.

    Steelers lost a touchdown early because of the POOR officiating.

  16. TebowedOutOfThePostSeasonsAndNeverToReturn says: Jan 17, 2016 6:30 PM

    How is that not pass interference on Talib in the end zone against Bryant? He was making hard contact long before the ball got there. What the heck is going on out there? Gay just touched Thomas within 5 yards of the line of scrimmage and drew a flag.

  17. runtheball says: Jan 17, 2016 6:32 PM

    TebowedOutOfThePostSeasonsAndNeverToReturn says:
    Jan 17, 2016 6:29 PM
    BTW, why was that not pass interference on Heath Miller there? Arms were pinned to his side not letting him even reach for the football. After that ticky-tack call against Gay what is going on out there?

    The pass in the end zone to Bryant was even worse.

  18. tellmeaboutitbaby says: Jan 17, 2016 6:32 PM

    Refs cheating against the Steelers?!?! Every game occurrence!!! Multiple pass interference calls should be made against Denver but no calls as usual

  19. nhpats says: Jan 17, 2016 6:32 PM

    Manning will get desperate soon and start throwing pics…

  20. peytonwantsaflag says: Jan 17, 2016 6:32 PM

    My God, is this playoff or preseason? These teams suck.

  21. jgammell34 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:33 PM

    I am just amazed everyone and their brother gave steelers no chance leading up to this game. Heck most of the media was alreading talking up the manning/brady matchup.

  22. nhpats says: Jan 17, 2016 6:33 PM

    They just showed Goodell at the game. He is soiling himself realizing the Patriots will beat either of these teams!

  23. oiler1980 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:33 PM

    To nflLifer or however you spell it..

    This is about the Steelers and Broncos..

    Stop bringing up players and teams that don’t belong to you.

  24. norcalmafia says: Jan 17, 2016 6:35 PM

    Damn..denver has lots of talent but they just don’t seem dominate for some reason..as football fans we should all at least enjoy watching one of the all time greats Manning play in what might be his last game..Except Seahawks fans they’ve only been watching football for 3 years before that they all loved their soccer team..

  25. jag1959 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:35 PM

    Drops by Denver helping Steelers D but the coverage has been better than expected as well.

  26. firegoodell says: Jan 17, 2016 6:35 PM

    Should have been pass interference on Talib in the endzone on Bryant – he absolutely MUGGED him prior to the ball getting there – he got the no call based on his rep – if that’s a steelers DB its a PI call for sure

  27. 6ball says: Jan 17, 2016 6:36 PM

    .
    @nfllifer

    ” And no mention of about 5-6 drops by Denver’s receivers! Brady would be cursing out his players which shows the difference between a class act like Peyton and well you know a jerk like Brady!”

    Receivers who consistently drop passes lose games. Someone should tell them to do what they’re paid to do….. catch the ball!!!!!
    .

  28. brendafortheboyz says: Jan 17, 2016 6:37 PM

    Peyton cannot throw the ball AND run and catch it himself…smh….perfectly thrown passes!! As one poster mentioned, Peyton has always been pure class!!!!

  29. nyjfan111 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:38 PM

    All,this game tells me is that NE is going to the Super Bowl.

  30. bills99 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:38 PM

    Manning is thru. Will retire after this debacle.

    Go Bills

  31. dodgerlakerfan1969 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:43 PM

    Brady and the Patriots had 6 drops yesterday. Go look at the score and Brady’s stats.

  32. harrisonhits2 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:44 PM

    “How is that not pass interference on Talib in the end zone against Bryant? He was making hard contact long before the ball got there. What the heck is going on out there? Gay just touched Thomas within 5 yards of the line of scrimmage and drew a flag.”

    League wants one more Brady vs Manning ratings bonanza.

  33. it's all bs says: Jan 17, 2016 6:45 PM

    bills99 says:
    Jan 17, 2016 6:38 PM
    Manning is thru. Will retire after this debacle.

    Go Bills

    ————————-

    sheesh he can’t catch his own passes….what is with you haters???

  34. zigthepatsfan says: Jan 17, 2016 6:46 PM

    nfliferfan22 says:
    Jan 17, 2016 6:19 PM
    And no mention of about 5-6 drops by Denver’s receivers! Brady would be cursing out his players which shows the difference between a class act like Peyton and well you know a jerk like Brady!

    Dry your eyes, blow your nose and read the article again. There is almost a whole paragraph about the drops

  35. joetoronto says: Jan 17, 2016 6:48 PM

    Simms and Nantz just thought a Phghton Manning pass was tipped because it quacked and dropped on it’s way to the sideline.

    “Oh, it wasn’t tipped.” :)

  36. coltcountrysteelerfan says: Jan 17, 2016 6:49 PM

    Hey NE trolls, If Pittsburgh wins this, I wouldn’t sleep on them. Fans and most experts gave them no chance against the #3 seed Bengals. All experts and fans gave them no game against the #1 seed Broncos. Brown and Williams will hopefully be back next week if they win.

  37. it's all bs says: Jan 17, 2016 6:50 PM

    dayum peeps…..just stop it…..BOTH Brady and Peyton are class acts…..and you’d KILL for either QB on your team and you know it……YIKES!!!!!

    BTW Brady isn’t playing in this game anyway….why bring him up???

  38. skawh says: Jan 17, 2016 6:51 PM

    Listen to all the Pat’s fans talking trash. A trashless fan base whose team hasn’t won anything, an is actually 3-4 over the last 7 games.

    Talk about a glass house fan base. Trolling much?

  39. bleck5 says: Jan 17, 2016 6:59 PM

    skawh says:
    Jan 17, 2016 6:51 PM
    Listen to all the Pat’s fans talking trash. A trashless fan base whose team hasn’t won anything, an is actually 3-4 over the last 7 games.

    Talk about a glass house fan base. Trolling much?

    ______________

    Pats have won far more than any ither team in this milenia. Keep crying.

  40. plum54 says: Jan 17, 2016 7:14 PM

    Yeah Manning has been real classy, having HGH shipped to his house is classy?!?

  41. it's all bs says: Jan 17, 2016 7:24 PM

    Jan 17, 2016 7:14 PM
    Yeah Manning has been real classy, having HGH shipped to his house is classy?!?

    ___________________

    yea and brady snuck onto my driveway last night and let the air out my tires……REALLY!!!!!

  42. fritz96 says: Jan 17, 2016 7:57 PM

    LOL @ the Manning haters.

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