Final/OT

Steelers 19

(8-3, 5-1 away)

Bills 16

(2-9, 1-5 home)

Coverage: CBS

1:00 PM ET, November 28, 2010

Ralph Wilson Stadium, Buffalo, NY 

1 2 3 4 OT T
PIT 7 6 0 3 319
BUF 0 0 7 9 016

Top Performers

Passing: R. Fitzpatrick (BUF) - 265 YDS, 1 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: R. Mendenhall (PIT) - 36 CAR, 151 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: H. Ward (PIT) - 7 REC, 107 YDS

Steelers claim overtime victory as Bills blow several chances

Associated Press

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Bills receiver Stevie Johnson was inconsolable for letting a victory slip through his hands. The Pittsburgh Steelers weren't going to let him or Buffalo get a second chance.

With his head down at the end of the bench, Johnson couldn't watch as Shaun Suisham hit a 41-yard field goal with 2:14 left in overtime to secure the Steelers' 19-16 victory Sunday.

It was a dramatic turn of events for the Bills and Johnson, in particular, after he could've ended the game in Buffalo's favor on the previous possession but dropped what would have been a 40-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick.

"I had the game in my hands and I dropped it," Johnson said. "Humbled. Humbled."

Then, growing emotional, Johnson added: "I'll never get over it. Ever."

In a game the Bills (2-9) proved they're not all that bad, the Steelers (8-3) showed why they're better.

Suisham hit all four of his field-goal attempts, including a 48-yarder. His decisive kick capped a 13-play, 58-yard drive which Ben Roethlisberger kept alive by hitting Mike Wallace for a 17-yard catch to convert third-and-8.

As the Steelers celebrated, not far from their minds was how close they came to losing.

"I had my helmet on and I was going to the locker room," defensive tackle Casey Hampton said, when he saw Johnson 2 yards in the end zone, having sneaked in behind defensive backs Ike Taylor and Ryan Clark.

"You're talking about a guy who's been extremely hot," Clark said of Johnson. "Luckily for us, he didn't [catch it]."

Rashard Mendenhall had 151 yards rushing and scored on a 1-yard plunge in helping Pittsburgh prepare for an AFC North first-place showdown at Baltimore next weekend. Hines Ward had seven catches for 107 yards, and Roethlisberger finished 20 of 33 for 246 yards

Buffalo proved feisty in facing one of the NFL's elite teams by overcoming a 13-point first-half deficit and forcing overtime with 2 seconds left in regulation when Rian Lindell hit a 49-yard field goal. Fred Jackson had five catches for 105 yards, including a 65-yard touchdown, and added 59 yards rushing.

The Bills had a two-game win streak snapped. Each of their past four losses have been by 3 points, including two in overtime, after they lost 37-34 at Baltimore on Oct. 24, and 13-10 at Kansas City the following week. Buffalo was also coming off a 49-31 win at Cincinnati, in which it overcame a 21-point first-half deficit.

"We fought so hard out there, yet again, it's one of those overtime heartbreakers," said Fitzpatrick, who finished 23 of 45 for 265. "There's not much to say than the guys in that locker room, including me, are really hurting over that one."

In a game the Bills looked out of by halftime, credit Fitzpatrick for showing he could not only take a vicious hit, but also punch back.

Down 13-0 late in the third quarter, linebacker James Harrison broke in untouched and, with his head lowered, struck Fitzpatrick just beneath the chin just as the quarterback got off a pass.

Harrison was penalized 15 yards for roughing the passer -- and faces another potential fine from the NFL for leading with his helmet.

"It's not going to change the way I play," said Harrison, who's already been docked $100,000 this season. "There was nothing wrong about the play."

Though knocked a little woozy, Fitzpatrick responded three plays later by hitting Jackson for his 65-yard touchdown catch and run.

The score gave the Bills life, as they eventually tied it at 13 when Lindell hit two field goals 2:07 apart -- the second set up after Buffalo safety Jairus Byrd stripped Mendenhall of the ball at the Steelers 23.

Ahead 16-13, the Steelers got a big defensive play from Troy Polamalu, who made a diving interception at the goal line after Fitzpatrick's pass bounced off Johnson's fingertips with 2:51 left in regulation.

Pittsburgh couldn't finish Buffalo off, even in front of a large contingent of Terrible Towel-waving Steelers fans that made the three-hour trip north.

The undisciplined Steelers were penalized 10 times for 107 yards -- including five offensive holding penalties, three called against guard Chris Kemoeatu.

"We can't make those mistakes as an offense," Roethlisberger said.

At least Big Ben could chime in on a victory, and couldn't help but comment on Johnson's drop.

"When he dropped it, I said, 'Well, hopefully that's new life for us,' " Roethlisberger said.

Game notes


The Steelers dominated the entire first half in which they had the edge in score, 13-0, time of possession (23 minutes, 55 seconds to 6:05), first downs (18-4) and yards offense (225-51). ... Bills coach Chan Gailey said DE Dwan Edwards is out indefinitely after hurting his left hamstring on the Steelers first possession. ... Fitzpatrick extended his TD streak to 12 games, the Bills' longest since Doug Flutie's 12-game streak in 1999.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
PIT
BUF
1st Downs2819
Passing 1st downs
1314
Rushing 1st downs
123
1st downs from Penalties
32
3rd down efficiency
12-194-13
4th down efficiency
0-01-1
Total Plays8364
Total Yards426329
Yards per play5.15.1
Total Drives1112
Passing220255
Comp - Att
20-3323-45
Yards per pass
6.75.7
Interceptions thrown
01
Sacks - Yards Lost
5-262-10
Rushing20674
Rushing Attempts
4517
Yards per rush
4.64.4
Red Zone (Made-Att)1-10-3
Penalties10-1074-20
Turnovers12
Fumbles lost
11
Interceptions thrown
01
Defensive / Special Teams TDs00
Possession45:2327:23

Passing Leaders

PITC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Roethli...20/332467.5005-26
BUFC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Fitzpat...23/452655.9112-10

Rushing Leaders

PITCARYDSAVGTDLG
Mendenhall361514.2122
Redman5255.009
BUFCARYDSAVGTDLG
Jackson12594.9013
Ganther3113.706

Receiving Leaders

PITRECYDSAVGTDLGTGTS
Ward710715.30248
Miller44611.50267
BUFRECYDSAVGTDLGTGTS
Jackson510420.81655
Johnson7689.701815

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERPITBUF
pitTD07:06Rashard Mendenhall 1 Yd Run (Shaun Suisham Kick) 70
SECOND QUARTERPITBUF
pitFG14:45Shaun Suisham 45 Yd 100
pitFG00:03Shaun Suisham 46 Yd 130
THIRD QUARTERPITBUF
bufTD03:45Fred Jackson 65 Yd Pass From Ryan Fitzpatrick (Rian Lindell Kick) 137
FOURTH QUARTERPITBUF
bufFG13:32Rian Lindell 29 Yd 1310
bufFG11:25Rian Lindell 32 Yd 1313
pitFG06:19Shaun Suisham 48 Yd 1613
bufFG00:02Rian Lindell 49 Yd 1616
OVERTIMEPITBUF
pitFG02:14Shaun Suisham 41 Yd 1916

Research Notes

From Elias: The Bills loss was their third in Overtime this season, tying the NFL record for Most Overtime losses in a single season... They are just the fifth team in NFL history with 3 overtime losses in one season, and the first since The Cardinals in 1997 to do it... Only one of the previous 4 teams finished at least .500 on the season, while the Bills loss today assures them of their seventh straight losing season.
  [+]
Fred Jackson: 65-yd Rec TD from Ryan Fitzpatrick. Longest Bills TD from scrimmage this season

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