The Browns came into Heinz Field on Sunday well aware of the organization’s dismal history at the home of the Steelers.
After a poor first half, the Browns came close to getting a better result. They scored 24 straight points to tie the game at 27 in the fourth quarter, but the Steelers were able to drive for a winning field goal that sent the Browns to their 10th straight season opening loss. After the game, coach Mike Pettine said he was happy to see his team rally but wanted the players to keep their focus on the result because there’s no such thing as losing well in the NFL.
“I told the team afterwards this is a pass-fail league,” Pettine said, via the team. “We failed. I’m proud of the effort in the second half but it’s a valuable lesson to learn. You’re behind 24 points at halftime. I don’t know what the percentages are of coming back and winning. I guarantee it’s probably right around one. There are no moral victories in this league, but I was proud of the resolve and the character that showed up.”
The Browns had success going with a higher tempo offense in the second half as they kicked up the urgency in light of the score. Getting that urgency level where it needs to be at the opening kickoff should be a top priority this week because the Browns may have wound up with a win had they shown up from the outset.