Halftime: Steelers 17, Cribbs 7

The Browns are hanging close, but odd officiating and better passing have the Steelers comfortably ahead at the mid-point.

The Browns came into Pittsburgh trying to snap an 11-game losing streak to the Steelers.

Halfway through, it looks like it will be 12 as the Steelers lead 17-7.

The Browns only offense was Josh Cribbs, who returned a 98-yard kickoff for a touchdown and rushed for 30 yards from the ‘Wildcat' offense.

The Steelers had big plays from Ben Roethlisberger to Santonio Holmes, Hines Ward and Heath Miller to propel them two 17 first half points.

The Browns squandered a scoring opportunity in the first quarter after Alex Hall recovered a fumbled snap by Roethlisberger on the Steelers' 39. Cribbs took the first two snaps at quarterback and picked up the first down to the 29 on a run on the second play. On third-and-6, Derek Anderson came in and after getting pressured, flipped the ball to Jerome Harrison, who ran to the 14 for a first down.

After the first down, Cribbs was at quarterback and he threw his first pass and it was dropped by Chansi Stuckey. He tried to throw to Stuckey on the next down and it was intercepted by Troy Polamalu inside the 10.

After the turnover, the Steelers moved the ball 85 yards for a touchdown as Roethlisberger hit Miller, who beat David Bowens for an eight-yard touchdown with 11:26 to play in the first half to make it 7-0. Big plays were a pass from Roethlisberger to Miller for 22 yards to the Browns' 49 and then Roethlisberger hit Holmes for 41 yards to the nine.

The Browns moved to Steelers' territory to the 45, but couldn't convert on third down and had to punt back to the Steelers.

After punting back to Pittsburgh, it took no time for the Steelers to go 87 yards in under three minutes to make it 14-0. Ward caught a crossing pass from Roethlisberger from 52 yards out with 4:26 to play in the first half.

Cribbs took the ensuing kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-7 with 4:15 to play in the first half. With the score, Cribbs became the Browns all-time leader in kick returns for scores with eight. It was his eighth (six kickoff/ two punt) return for scores.

After Cribbs' score, the Steelers, once again, moved quickly into Browns' territory on a pass to Miller and a late hit on David Bowens moved the ball to the 34. Two runs by Willie Parker took the ball to the 25 at the two-minute warning.

Eric Wright had his hands on a Roethlisberger pass, but couldn't hang on. The Steelers elected to go for the first down from the 15 on fourth down with 30 seconds to play and Roethlisberger picked it up with a quarterback sneak.

The measurement showed the ball was short, but the Steelers were given a first down and Roethlisberger hit Ward for an apparent touchdown , but the replay overruled the call that Ward didn't control the ball with 17 seconds to play.

After a pass that was dropped by Brandon McDonald in the end  zone, the Steelers settled for a 32-yard field goal by Jeff Reed with seven seconds to play to make it 17-7 at the half.


Wildcat Look: WR Joshua Cribbs took the first snap and ran around left end for 18 yards to the 38. He also ran on another play on the series for five yards. Cribbs almost broke a punt in the first quarter, but was tackled by the punter at the Browns' 48. Cribbs ran a couple other times before trying to throw a pass and his second pass was intercepted by S Troy Polamalu. Cribbs had 30 yards rushing in the first quarter on just three runs. RB Jerome Harrison had 26 yards on five carries, while RB Jamal Lewis had two yards on four carries.

Long Streak: The Browns came into the game having lost 11 straight to the Steelers and 17 of 18 if playoff games are included.

DA's Day: QB Derek Anderson, who was 2-of-17 for 23 yards against the Bills, started 0-of-3 against the Steelers, although two passes could've been caught. Anderson completed his first pass with just over ten minutes to play in the second quarter to WR Mohamed Massaquoi. In the first half, Anderson was 2-of-9 for 14 yards.

Almost for Brian: Rookie WR Brian Robiskie almost caught his first NFL pass on a third-and-10, but couldn't get both his feet in bounds.

Fraley Benched: After helping produce back-to-back 100 yard rushers with OL Hank Fraley at right guard, Fraley was replaced by Floyd Womack, who started prior to an injury. Fraley lined up as a tackle eligible on several occasions.

No Stick on Stuckey: WR Chansi Stuckey dropped the first pass thrown to him. Rookie WR Mohamed Massaquoi dropped the first pass thrown to him.

Sack Men: LB David Bowens and DL Robaire Smith combined to sack Roethlisberger on the first drive. The Steelers were on the Browns' 36 before the sack and it forced a punt. LB D'Qwell Jackson led the Browns at the half with five tackles.

No Kam, Heiden or Dawson: LB Kamerion Wimbley missed the game with the flu, while K Phil Dawson missed his third-straight game with a calf injury. LB Jason Trusnik started in Wimbley's place. It was Trusnik's first career start. He was acquired in the Braylon Edwards trade.

The OBR Top Stories