This picture sums up the whole game. Almost just posted this as the whole recap.
The Steelers got the ball first and came out of the gate fast with Ben finding Bryant wide open down the sideline for a big 44-yarder to instantly get us into Chiefs territory. Bryant made some things happen on an end-around then pretty much disappeared for the rest of the game. From there, Le'Veon and AB took over the drive, alternating rushes and short passes to get down to the 5. Ben underthrew AB on 3rd down and once again we had to settle for 3 on our opening drive.
The Chiefs had obviously watched tape on what the Cleveland Browns did to the Steelers and came out with a similar gameplan. James Harrison and Cam Heyward absolutely wrecked the Chiefs line all day and teamed up for a sack early in the drive.
The first two drives had consumed 13 minutes of game clock but the trend didn't continue as the Steelers went 3-and-out, a less than ideal offensive series after the defense was just on the field for 7 minutes.
The Chiefs second drive was basically a mirror of their first. They picked their way down the field by runnign the ball, throwing swing passes and staying away from Will Gay. The defense came up with a stop in the red zone but the Chiefs faked a field goal and were able to convert on a shovel pass to Travis Kelce. The Chiefs looked poised to get their first touchdown of the year by a WR when Smith threw a back-shoulder pass to Bowe but Antwon Blake made a great play reaching his hand in to knock the ball away.
The defense stepped up and Worilds chased Smith out of bounds on 3rd down which was technically a sack.
The Chiefs got the ball back with just over 4 minutes to play and drove right back down the field with Wilson breaking a short pass down the sideline after a few missed tackles to get into Steelers territory. James Harrison blew up a running play but the Chiefs were able to almost get it back on 3rd down but the replay official ruled that Mike Mitchell actually made a play and stopped Thomas short of the sticks. Andy Reid opted to go for it on 4th and 1 rather than kick and the defense came through with Timmons, Harrison and Will Allen stacking up Charles in the backfield.
After a first half that consisted of long drives that ended in field goals, the start of the second half seemed like a flurry of punts. James Harrison continued his return to Darth Harrison Mode and wrecked Alex Smith again.
Never forget that time James Harrison inspired a Metallica Album.
After an exchange of punts, the Chiefs drove it down into field goal range but Stephon Tuitt lowered the boom on Charles and knocked the ball out.
Huge recovery by Vince Williams.
Ben wasted no time in taking advantage of the turnover, going right to the air and hitting wheaton and Heath to get us across midfield. A pass to AB on a deep cross got us into field goal range and Le'Veon got us to the goal line. Ben did his Ben thing and avoided an obvious legwhip and took a shot while delivering a ball to Antonio Brown in the end zone.
That was AB's 12th receiving touchdown of the year, putting him into a tie with Hines Ward and Louis Lipps for the most receiving touchdowns in a single season.
It was scary for a moment as Ben got up slow after taking a big hit and he went to the locker room to get checked out.
The defense came out on fire and Jason Worilds rung up his second sack of the game.
The Chiefs took advantage and drove it down into field goal range to get it to a 1-score game.
The Steelers came out with Ben back under center, determined to take some time off the clock and rolled with run-run-pass pretty much the whole way down the field. Fortunately, those passes were to AB and he came through every time (including drawing a pass interference penalty that got us into field goal range. The Steelers got inside the 10 but couldn't quite punch it in. They did force the Chiefs to use 2 timeouts.
Here's the problem with the Chiefs offense: Alex Smith can't throw downfield. In the whole game, he only attempted 1 pass that travelled longer than 20 yards in the air and it was incomplete. He only completed 2 passes over 15 yards. With time running down and needing 2 scores, the Chiefs had to slowly pick their way down the field, which the Steelers were more than content to let them do. The Chiefs got to the edge of the red zone by the 2-minute warning when Tuitt sacked Smith and the Chiefs couldn't rebound. Andy Reid opted for a field goal to cut it to 8.
Not that one.
Brace yourselves for Sunday Night Football with the AFC North title on the line.