The Cincinnati Bengals won another divisional victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers, beating them 41-10. The Bengals swept the Steelers for the first time since 2009 and have won three straight wins against them since 1990.
Not only was it a victory, but it was complete domination in all phases.
Joe Mixon led the way on the pitch, completing his best game of the season so far. He had 27 carries for a career-high 165 yards, which far surpassed his previous season high he set in Week 1. Mixon also had two short rushing touchdowns after getting some. only one in his first seven games against the Steelers of his career.
While Mixon had 165 rushing yards, the Bengals held down the Steelers to just 141 total yards against the Bengals’ first defense.
Mixon got involved early, reclaiming the ball in each of the first six games and representing the Bengals’ 45 offensive yards. But Burrow took the ball himself into the end zone first, rushing to the left and missing Minkah Fitzpatrick. After Burrow’s eight-yard touchdown, Evan McPherson scored the extra point and the Bengals had a 7-0 lead after just possession, with 9:29 remaining in the first quarter.
The Bengals didn’t have to wait long to retrieve the ball and regained possession after an interception by Eli Apple. Apple returned the ball over the five-yard line, but Burrow took a sack on the third down to force a basket. Having McPherson on a 31-yard try was just a formality, and the Bengals extended their lead to 10-0 with 6:01 left in the first quarter.
The Steelers responded by going straight back to Apple, and Ben Roethlisberger finished a 42-yard bomb on Chase Claypool. This put them in the basket range, but Apple deflected a pass in the end zone to Claypool to score a fourth try. Chris Boswell hit the basket for 40 yards and the Steelers went 10-3 on the board with 2:17 left in the quarterback.
Burrow made more passes in the Bengals’ next practice, completing his five passes for 69 yards. His best pass of the day was a 32-yard bomb to Tee Higgins. In the end zone, Higgins rose through the ranks and hooked the ball over the defender in the end zone for the score. With 14:15 left in the second quarter, the Bengals had a 17-3 lead over the Steelers after the extra point.
Burrow actually threw a check in the next practice, but got Mixon’s help moving the ball around the field. The running back hit the 100-yard mark in just the second quarter, making it his second straight 100-yard game. He ended the practice by hitting the ball from the one-yard line with 2:43 left until halftime. The extra point was good and the Bengals took a 24-3 lead.
The Steelers had the ball with less than a minute to go, but former Steeler Mike Hilton knocked out Roethlisberger and returned the ball for a touchdown. It was a 21-yard return for the No.21, and the Bengals had a 31-3 lead with just 30 seconds left before halftime.
In the first half, Mixon had 117 rushing yards, 5.9 per carry, which is more than his total of eight of his eleven games this season. It was also his career high for a first half.
Burrow also had an electric half, with just two failures, a passing touchdown and a rushing touchdown. He had more yards in the first half than he had the entire game in the Bengals’ win over the Raiders. Of Burrow’s 154 yards in the first half, Higgins had 95 with the receiving touchdown.
Meanwhile, the Bengals’ defense looked like they were in the first clash between these two teams. Roethlisberger completed less than half of his passes and threw two picks, while the running backs only rushed for three rushing yards.
The third quarter was more dull than the first two, with the Bengals playing cautiously on offense and winning the big games on defense. Late in the quarter, McPherson added another 50+ yard field goal to his resume. After the 51-yard kick, the Bengals had a 34-3 lead over the Steelers with 2:35 left in the third quarter.
Mixon waited until the end of the third to get his longest run of the game, adding a 32-yard rush to his incredible day. This set up a 19-yard pass to Higgins, who in turn set up a one-yard touchdown on the ground for Mixon. With the extra point, the Bengals had a 41-3 lead with 13:10 remaining in the game.
The Steelers finally got into an attacking rhythm after the Bengals pulled out their starters. At the end of the fourth quarter, Roethlisberger joined Pat Freiermuth for a 15-yard touchdown pass. With 2:59 to go in the game, the Bengals still held a 41-10 lead.
From there, the two teams were content to let time ring. The Bengals won the decisive 41-10 victory over the Steelers at Paul Brown Stadium.
The Bengals improved to 7-4 over the season and now have more wins this year than Zac Taylor had in his first two years combined. A Browns victory over the Ravens on Sunday night would propel the Bengals to first place in the AFC North.
The Steelers fell to 5-5-1, which would put them at the bottom of the division.
The Bengals’ next game will be at home against the Chargers at 1 p.m. EST. Although the two played last year, this would be the first game featuring Burrow and Justin Herbert.