Steelers roll over Bengals, 24-13

CINCINNATI – One week after having its first half game plan dissected and scrutinized for being too pass oriented, the Pittsburgh Steelers came out on Sunday and did the exact same thing. The result this time? A 24-13 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.

The Steelers passed the ball 18 times in the first half -- compared to only 13 runs -- on their way to a 21-6 halftime lead, a deficit the Bengals would never be able to overcome.

The win for Pittsburgh is its seventh consecutive win in Cincinnati and the 15th in the last 18 years. It also pushes the Steelers record to 5-2 overall, and 2-0 in the suddenly tight AFC North, while Cincinnati falls to 2-5.

Offensively, Hines Ward played like it was 2001 as he hauled in eight passes for 88 yards, including two first half touchdowns from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Roethlisberger finished the afternoon 19-of-26 passing for 230 yards and two touchdowns.

For the second consecutive week the Steelers struggled to get a consistent pass rush but still managed to hold the Cincinnati offense to only 13 points. Carson Palmer hit on 23-of-31 passes for 206 yards and one touchdown.

The turning point of the game seemed to come late in the first half when Cincinnati, facing a fourth-and-1 from the Steelers' 2-yard line, elected to kick a chip-shot field instead of going for it. The Steelers responded by ending the half on a clock-killing 67-yard touchdown drive that was capped off on a 2-yard touchdown run from running back Willie Parker.

Parker finished with 126 yards on 22 carries, his fifth 100-yard game of the season.

The Steelers return home next Monday night for another important divisional contest with the Baltimore Ravens.

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