Final score: Steelers 28, Colts 7
Third quarter: Steelers 21, Colts 7
Halftime: Steelers 21, Colts 7
First quarter: Steelers 14, Colts 0
Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell celebrated after a touchdown. Yep, they were flagged.
Pat McAfee did the Conor McGregor strut after throwing a 35-yard completion on a fake punt. And his mom was watching!
Colts cornerback Vontae Davis left with a groin injury and did not return.
T.Y. Hilton exited with a back injury after taking a hard hit on a catch he somehow held on to. He tried to return, but was soon ruled out for the rest of the game.
Colts linebacker Robert Mathis left the game and did not return due to an elbow injury.
Before the game
The Pittsburgh Steelers snapped a four-game losing streak last Sunday, but how good can you really feel about a win over the Browns?
The Steelers crawled back to .500 by dispatching a winless Cleveland team in Week 11. The victory helped Pittsburgh keep pace alongside Baltimore in the AFC North, but the real indicator for the team’s immediate future may have come in a Week 10 loss.
That’s when the Steelers and Cowboys slugged it out in one of the best games of the 2016 season. Ben Roethlisberger threw for more than 400 yards and three touchdowns in an explosive effort that proved the Pittsburgh offense is as dangerous as ever — even if the defense isn’t up to par. Opponents have carved up the Steelers secondary for nearly 270 yards per game this fall, a mark that ranks just 26th in the NFL.
Pittsburgh could be even more dangerous if Le’Veon Bell has returned to his 2014 form. The former All-Pro has struggled this fall. In a five-game stretch from his season debut to last week’s game, he ran for only 289 yards and 3.5 yards per carry. Last week, he smoked the Browns to the tune of 146 yards and 5.2 yards per touch.
Granted, it’s just the Browns, but it’s a promising rebound nonetheless.
The Colts are in a similar position as the Steelers. Indianapolis dispatched Tennessee on Sunday to move into second place in the AFC South, but the Colts have plenty to prove in a season where they haven’t spent a single week with a winning record.
Andrew Luck has been his usual consistent self despite absorbing more sacks than any quarterback in the league. He’s on pace to throw more touchdown passes this fall than any other season but his breakout 2014 campaign, and his 62.9 completion percentage is a career high.
But he wasn’t able to take the field Thursday. The Pro Bowl quarterback entered the league’s concussion protocol and still hasn’t been cleared, leaving Scott Tolzien to start in his place.
While the Colts have had one of the league’s best receiving corps to fall back on, Indianapolis’ running game has done him no favors. The Colts rank in the league’s bottom third in most rushing categories thanks to an ineffective platoon led by veteran Frank Gore. The 33-year-old has had flashes of his former brilliance, but his 3.9 yards-per-carry figure is a full half-yard short of his career average.
This AFC matchup is the third and final of a Thanksgiving Day tripleheader. It will air on NBC and can be streamed at NBC Sports.