Pittsburgh, PA, United States (4E Sports) – Ben Roethlisberger tossed for 179 yards and a touchdown as the Pittsburgh Steelers kept their playoff hopes alive following a 20-7 victory over the Cleveland Browns in Sunday’s regular-season finale at Heinz Field.
Roethlisberger completed 19 of 31 passes with two interceptions while Le’Veon Bell rushed 20 times for 90 yards and a score for the Steelers, who will grab the sixth AFC playoff spot if the Kansas City Chiefs beat the San Diego Chargers later in the day.
Wide receiver Antonio Brown caught nine passes for 87 yards, becoming the first player in NFL record with at least five receptions and 50 receiving yards in every regular-season game.
Brown’s 1,499 receiving yards are a franchise single-season record. Brown also finished with 110 catches, two less than the 112 grabs Hines Ward had in 2002.
The Steelers won eight of their last 12 games following the franchise’s first 0-4 start since 1968 to end the regular season with an 8-8 mark.
Jason Campbell completed 24 of 41 passes for 240 yards with a touchdown and an interception for the Browns, who ended their campaign with a 4-12 record.
Pittsburgh wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery caught his team-leading ninth touchdown of the season from nine yards out, giving the Steelers a 7-0 lead with 9:53 to play in the first quarter.
Then, Bell rushed for a five-yard touchdown in the second period, extending the Steelers’ lead to 14-0, 4:22 before the break.
In the third, Shaun Suisham capped an 11-play, 54-yard drive with a 30-yard field goal that extended the Steelers’ lead to 17-0.
Suisham made it a 20-0 game when he made a 32-yard field goal with 8:26 to play in the fourth quarter.
Campbell finally put the Browns on the board with a 35-yard touchdown pass to Foswhitt Whittaker after a nine-play, 70-yard drive.