sunny.png
Thursday May 19th, 2022 5:20PM

Roethlisberger, Steelers in playoffs after OT win

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

BALTIMORE (AP) — Calm as can be on what could have been his final pass, Ben Roethlisberger was right on target, finding Ray-Ray McCloud over the middle on fourth down to set up Pittsburgh for the winning field goal in overtime.

“He's the same when everybody else gets funny,” coach Mike Tomlin said. “Everybody else gets a little tight, he's the same guy.”

Roethlisberger delayed his retirement for a little longer, guiding Pittsburgh to a 16-13 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday that left the Steelers on the verge of an improbable playoff berth. Then they had to sweat out a night game between the Chargers and Raiders. Any result other than a tie would put Pittsburgh in the postseason, but those two teams were indeed deadlocked until Las Vegas kicked a field goal at the end of overtime to win 35-32.

“We're big fans of game-winning kicks,” the Steelers tweeted shortly after midnight.

Hours earlier, Chris Boswell made a 36-yard field goal with 1:56 remaining to win the game for Pittsburgh. At the time, the Steelers (9-7-1) didn't sound too worried about the possibility that a Chargers-Raiders tie could still knock them out.

“I'm just happy for Ben,” Boswell said. “We're sending him to the playoffs. This team deserves it."

Both Baltimore and Pittsburgh had slim playoff hopes coming in. The Steelers needed to win and have Indianapolis lose to Jacksonville to have any chance of extending Roethlisberger’s career with a postseason appearance. The Ravens needed a win, a loss by the Colts — and losses by the Dolphins and Chargers later in the day.

The most unlikely part of those scenarios — Indianapolis losing to lowly Jacksonville — actually happened. The crowd in Baltimore, which included plenty of towel-waving Pittsburgh fans, roared its approval when highlights of that game were shown. The Jaguars prevailed 26-11 and were in control for much of the second half.

“We knew we had to take care of our business first and foremost,” Roethlisberger said. “It took extra time but we found a way to do it.”

The Steelers and Ravens (8-9) would have both been eliminated if their game had ended in a tie, so it was no surprise when Pittsburgh went for it on fourth-and-8 from the Baltimore 41 with 2:28 left in OT. McCloud made the catch for a 10-yard gain.

After the winning field goal, Roethlisberger held up his fist in celebration and went slowly to the middle of the field to commiserate with Ravens linebacker Justin Houston.

Latavius Murray put the Ravens ahead 10-3 with a 46-yard touchdown run in the third quarter, but Baltimore lost its sixth straight game to end the season. Five of the losses in that skid were by three points or fewer.

The Ravens were without star quarterback Lamar Jackson, who missed a fourth straight game with an ankle injury.

Roethlisberger admitted before last week’s home game against Cleveland that all signs pointed to retirement after this season. With one more home game, Pittsburgh fans turned that matchup against the Browns into a memorable celebration of his career.

“I think last week was so much more emotional, it took it all out and just made me feel like, ‘Let’s go play,’” Roethlisberger said. “At no point during this game did I think, ‘Man, this is it, it’s almost over.’ It just didn’t feel like that.”

It looked as if this would be the end for Roethlisberger when Baltimore led 10-6 and was driving in the fourth quarter, but Tyler Huntley threw an interception in the end zone.

The 39-year-old Roethlisberger threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Chase Claypool with 2:54 remaining to give Pittsburgh a 13-10 lead.

“You've got to pay respect where respect is due. We made it hard on him and he kept coming,” Ravens defensive lineman Calais Campbell said. “He made the plays he needed to. Big Ben, he’s a legend for making the plays in critical moments. He’s a warrior.”

Justin Tucker tied it with a 46-yard field goal.

T.J. Watt of the Steelers tied Michael Strahan's single-season record of 22 1/2 sacks, reaching that milestone late in the second quarter.

“It's definitely a cool thing,” Watt said. “I don't know if any of it's really hit me.”

That was the biggest highlight of a first half that didn't really live up to the standards of past Ravens-Steelers clashes.

After halftime, however, it became clear that Indianapolis was in real danger of losing, and suddenly the stakes in Baltimore went up. Pittsburgh kicked a field goal on fourth-and-2 to make it 10-6 in the third. Then Cameron Sutton of the Steelers intercepted Huntley in the end zone in a huge missed opportunity for the Ravens.

Pittsburgh squandered a chance of its own in the first quarter, recovering a fumble by Huntley at the Baltimore 39 but managing only a field goal. A false start on running back Benny Snell on fourth-and-1 forced the Steelers to settle for three points.

HISTORY

Watt's sack helped force the Ravens to kick a field goal in the final seconds of the second. He was also credited with a forced humble earlier.

In the first quarter, Huntley lost the snap, fell on the ball, then tried to get up with it and lost it. Although that took place behind the line of scrimmage, it was not considered a sack for Watt.

INJURIES

Pittsburgh WR Diontae Johnson (ribs) and RB Najee Harris (elbow) were injured but returned. CB Arthur Maulet was evaluated for a concussion. ... Baltimore RB Devonta Freeman went out with a rib injury, and receiver Tylan Wallace hurt his thigh on an unsuccessful fake punt. LB Tyus Bowser injured his ankle in the fourth. CB Tavon Young injured his hamstring.

UP NEXT

The Steelers open the playoffs at Kansas City next Sunday night.

The Ravens head into the offseason.

___

Follow Noah Trister at https://twitter.com/noahtrister

___

More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/hub/nfl and https://apnews.com/hub/pro-32 and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Football, AP Sports - NFL
© Copyright 2022 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Judge asks what more Djokovic could have done for a visa
An Australian judge who will decide whether top-ranked tennis star Novak Djokovic plays in the Australian Open has questioned what more the Serbian could have done to meet Australia’s coronavirus entry requirements
1:03AM ( 10 minutes ago )
Roethlisberger, Steelers in playoffs after OT win
Ben Roethlisberger delayed his retirement a little longer, guiding Pittsburgh to a 16-13 overtime win over the Baltimore Ravens that left the Steelers on the verge of an improbable playoff berth
12:58AM ( 16 minutes ago )
Klay Thompson has 17 points in return, Warriors beat Cavs
Klay Thompson scored 17 points in his return from two devastating injuries that sidelined him more than 2 1/2 years, helping the Golden State Warriors beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 96-82
12:53AM ( 20 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Bucs beat Panthers 41-17, earn No. 2 playoff seeding in NFC
Tom Brady topped 5,000 yards passing for the second time in his career and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers set a franchise record for regular-season victories with a 41-17 win over the Carolina Panthers
10:21PM ( 2 hours ago )
49ers clinch playoff berth by holding off Rams 27-24 in OT
The San Francisco 49ers clinched a playoff spot with a 27-24 overtime victory over the NFC West champion Los Angeles Rams
10:19PM ( 2 hours ago )
Smith sets PGA Tour record and outlasts Rahm at Kapalua
Cameron Smith got the new year off to a record start at the Sentry Tournament of Champions
9:45PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
Roethlisberger, Steelers on verge of playoffs after OT win
Ben Roethlisberger delayed his retirement for a few hours and probably longer, guiding Pittsburgh to a 16-13 overtime win over the Baltimore Ravens that left the Steelers on the verge of an improbable playoff berth
6:28PM ( 6 hours ago )
Jaguars clown Colts 26-11, prevent Indy from making playoffs
The Indianapolis Colts got clowned in Jacksonville
6:18PM ( 6 hours ago )
The Latest: Niners rally, make it interesting against Rams
The San Francisco 49ers have pulled even with the Los Angeles Rams after falling behind by 17 in a game it looks like they’ll need to win to get into the playoffs
6:16PM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Online Football
The Latest: Top-seeded Packers sit Rodgers in 2nd half
Green Bay did not start Aaron Rodgers in the second half against Detroit with the Packers already set as the No. 1 seed in the NFC
2:59PM ( 10 hours ago )
The Latest: Titans take big lead, close in on AFC's top seed
The Tennessee Titans are closing in on the AFC’s top seed, and the Jacksonville Jaguars have a chance at an upset that could create an intriguing playoff scenario
2:52PM ( 10 hours ago )
The Latest: Steelers' T.J. Watt ties Strahan's sacks record
Pittsburgh’s T
2:37PM ( 10 hours ago )
AP Sports - NFL
Judge asks what more Djokovic could have done for a visa
An Australian judge who will decide whether top-ranked tennis star Novak Djokovic plays in the Australian Open has questioned what more the Serbian could have done to meet Australia’s coronavirus entry requirements
1:03AM ( 10 minutes ago )
Klay Thompson has 17 points in return, Warriors beat Cavs
Klay Thompson scored 17 points in his return from two devastating injuries that sidelined him more than 2 1/2 years, helping the Golden State Warriors beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 96-82
12:53AM ( 20 minutes ago )
Titans get AFC's No. 1 seed; Colts' loss helps Steelers
The AFC playoffs will be running through Music City with the Tennessee Titans likely having Derrick Henry back for their first game this postseason
12:36AM ( 37 minutes ago )
Comedians, friends, co-stars react to death of Bob Saget
Bob Saget, the comedian and actor known for his role as a widower raising a trio of daughters in the sitcom “Full House,” was found dead Sunday in Florida
12:31AM ( 42 minutes ago )
Carlson's FG as OT expires sends Raiders into postseason
Daniel Carlson kicked a 47-yard field goal as time expired in overtime and the Las Vegas Raiders defeated the Los Angeles Chargers 35-32 on Sunday night to earn their first playoff berth since 2016
12:31AM ( 42 minutes ago )