Pittsburgh Steelers Gain Redemption Over Cleveland Browns
Dec 1, 2019; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Devlin Hodges (6) is sacked by Cleveland Browns defensive end Chad Thomas (92) during the first quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
The Pittsburgh Steelers tied up their season series with the Cleveland Browns after defeating them 20-13 in Pittsburgh with undrafted rookie Devlin Hodges under center.
He finished the game with 212 passing yards and split with a touchdown and interception. He faced off against Baker Mayfield, who finished with 196 yards, one touchdown, one interception, and five sacks.
Although the woeful Browns lost, they had an early lead in the first half.
The Browns started the game off with a long drive. Mayfield marched his team down the field with a handful of deep passes. Eight minutes into the game, the Browns found themselves in the red zone. They could not finish with seven, though, but an early field goal gave the Browns an early lead.
Several rushing attempts from Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt led the Browns into the red zone again. This time, Mayfield finished the drive with a 15-yard pass to Hunt for seven.
The Steelers trailed by 10 until Hodges began to roll. Hodges went deep to James Washington for 33 yards to move the team into field goal range. The Steelers dug into the lead with a Chris Boswell field goal.
The two-minute gameplay came into effect for the Steelers late in the half. Still down 10-3, Hodges connected with Washington again for a 30-yard touchdown, tying the game at halftime.
Right off the bat, the Steelers fumbled on their side of the field. However, an illegal formation saved their drive as the play did not count. Washington created problems again with a 44-yard gain. Benny Snell, Jr. capped off the drive with three rushes, including a one-yard touchdown run.
The Browns looked to bounce back, but a fumble gave the Steelers the ball near midfield. Going into the fourth quarter, the Steelers turned the fumble into three points on another Boswell field goal.
Mayfield drove the Browns back down to close the gap. A few passes led to a field goal and a 20-13 score.
With the one-possession differential, the Browns had one final shot. While driving down the field, Mayfield looked to connect with Jarvis Landry. However, former Brown Joe Haden picked off Mayfield to seal the deal, and that was that.
Overall, the Steelers made the right choice by starting Hodges. The Duck kept the Steelers in playoff contention while putting their AFC North rivals one step closer to elimination. Next week, the Steelers will travel to Arizona to play the Cardinals while the Browns face the Bengals at home.