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Bengals come back, beat Steelers, stay undefeated

Ben Roethlisberger, Geno Atkins

AP

For much of the day, the Bengals quarterback looked like playoff Andy Dalton.

But at the end, it was the Pittsburgh quarterback who looked like coming-off-an-injury Ben Roethlisberger.

The Bengals rallied for a 16-10 win at Pittsburgh, moving them to 7-0 and helping to salve a rough day for an offense that had known no problems this year.

Midway through the fourth quarter, it appeared the Steelers had this one in their control.

Steelers cornerback Antwon Blake intercepted Dalton in the end zone, and it was just the third interception of the season for the Bengals quarterback. But it killed a potential scoring drive, as close as the Bengals had come to the end zone to that point.

When Steelers safety Mike Mitchell gave Dalton his fourth pick of the year moments later, it seemed to put a bow on this one for Pittsburgh.

The Bengals hadn’t been held under 24 points all season, but the Steelers kept the clamps on them all day.

Cincinnati didn’t convert a third-down until the third quarter, but the Bengals also made enough mistakes to undo their best efforts. Emblematic was a penalty that backed a field goal attempt back 5 yards in the third quarter, and was promptly blocked.

But that’s when Roethlisberger came back in, throwing a bizarre interception which he should have chunked into the stands, allowing the Bengals life they had not had prior to that point. It was one of three picks on the day for Roethlisberger, who was 28-of-45 passing for 262 yards and a touchdown.

That last one set up Dalton’s touchdown to A.J. Green, a flash of life for a team which has rolled up yards and points all year.

The Steelers had a late chance, but Roethlisberger’s final-second pass was disastrously out of bounds, after he had moved them into position.

In addition to being 4-4, the Steelers are also going to have to make do after another apparently serious injury.

Running back Le’Veon Bell was taken from the stadium to be evaluated after a first-half knee injury, which will put more pressure on Roethlisberger and the Steelers offense. The quarterback found his old connection with Antonio Brown and Heath Miller (10 catches for 105 yards) again, but things will get more complicated if Bell is out for an extended amount of time.