Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 10/7/12
PITTSBURGH -- At some point, Philadelphia's high wire act to start the season was going to come crashing down. It was only fitting that it came at the hands of another comeback artist.Ben Roethlisberger engineered a game-winning drive that ended with Shaun Suisham's 34-yard field goal as the Pittsburgh Steelers edged Philadelphia 16-14 Sunday at Heinz Field. The Eagles had hoped that Michael Vick's 2-yard touchdown pass to Brent Celek with 6:38 left in the fourth quarter would be enough for their fourth comeback win of 2012 and their fourth win of the season. But Roethlisberger calmly directed a patient, clinical offense in the final minutes. The Steelers relied on short passes, as well as several key runs by Rashard Mendenhall, to drive deep into Philadelphia territory. Rather than play for the touchdown, Pittsburgh (2-2) played it conservative with less than a minute left in the clock, running up the middle to center the ball for Suisham's third field goal of the day. The kick erased all hope for a Philadelphia (3-2) comeback, something that the Eagles were able to nearly pull off thanks to an excellent drive orchestrated by Vick. Down 13-7 early in the fourth quarter, Philadelphia twice converted on fourth-and-1 to keep a 17-play, 79-yard drive alive. The first conversion came with the Eagles pinned on their own 31, an occasion that would see most coaches opting to punt. LeSean McCoy picked up the first conversion with a 2-yard run, and then five plays later, picked up two more yards to convert the other fourth down opportunity. Philadelphia inched inside the Steelers' 5-yard line, and Vick found Celek in the end zone on third down to pull ahead 14-13. It was a markedly better performance for Vick and the Eagles in the second half, as the Steelers built a 10-0 halftime lead. Vick struggled to hold onto the football in the first half, fumbling twice -- including once on the goal line to erase a sure touchdown opportunity -- and having another fumble called back once officials ruled he was down by contact. It was a stout first half defensive performance from Pittsburgh, even though they didn't get as healthy as anticipated. Safety Troy Polamalu and linebacker James Harrison both returned to the lineup, but only Harrison made it through the game unscathed. Polamalu lasted just a handful of series before reaggravating his calf injury. In between the sloppy play and injuries, Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers offense managed to piece together enough plays to take a 10-0 lead into the half. That included Mendenhall's 13-yard touchdown run, his first of the season after missing the first four weeks as he finished his recovery from an ACL tear last season. The Eagles cut the Steelers' leader to 10-7 with 6:32 left in the third quarter when he found McCoy for a 15-yard touchdown catch. Suisham's second field goal of the day made it 13-7, setting the stage for the dueling attempts at a game-winning drive. Roethlisberger finished 21-of-37 for 207 yards, while Mendenhall ran 14 times for 81 yards and a touchdown in his return. McCoy was held to 53 yards on 16 carries, while Vick was 20-of-30 for 175 yards passing.NOTES: LeSean McCoy's touchdown kept a streak alive for his alma mater. The University of Pittsburgh has had an alum score in 24 straight games, the fourth longest streak in the NFL since 2000 and the longest active streak. Miami (Fla.) holds the record with former Hurricanes scoring in 149 straight games from 2002 to 2011. ... Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley left in the first half with a hamstring injury and did not return. ... Suisham is 5-for-5 on field goals this year and has converted eight straight. He last missed in the 2011 regular season finale against Cleveland.
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