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Steelers shut down Seahawks

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Ben Roethlisberger completed 22-of-30 passes for 298 yards and a touchdown, and the Steelers defense dominated the Seahawks, holding them to 164 total yards as Pittsburgh bounced back from a Week 1 loss to soundly defeat Seattle 24-0.

So much for belief that Pittsburgh’s defense is too old; or the belief that the offensive line can’t hold up with all the turnover.

The Steelers’ defense pitched a shutout against the Seattle Seahawks, the second time in a row they’ve blanked their west coast opponent, and used a two-headed power running game to churn out a 24-0 victory, putting those criticisms to rest – at least for this week.

Pittsburgh’s offense started hot before hitting a wall early and failed to capitalize from the one-yard line, eventually turning the ball over on downs.

The unit came back with a vengeance one drive later, though. A reverse pass by Emmanuel Sanders and a dose of hard running from Rashard Mendenhall pushed Pittsburgh to the brink once again, with Mendenhall breaking the plane from one yard out for the first touchdown of the game.

The Steelers turned to a different ball-carrier on the next drive and Isaac Redman rewarded their decision with a 20-yard touchdown romp early in the fourth quarter to put Pittsburgh up by 14 points, double what the team scored in four quarters against the Ravens.

Pittsburgh made it four-for-four in making it to the red zone later in the quarter, but were forced to endure a frightening moment when Seattle’s Raheem Brock rolled up on Ben Roethlisberger’s knee, forcing him out of the game for a brief time.

Big Ben did return after a two-play relief effort by Charlie Batch, but his touchdown attempt fell incomplete and Pittsburgh settled for a chips-hot field goal by Shaun Suisham and a 17-0 halftime lead.

While the Pittsburgh defense held the line, the offense went for the jugular, extending that lead with a two-yard touchdown pass from Ben to Mike Wallace, putting the Steelers up by 24 with a quarter to play.

The Steelers defense kept the scoreboard clean in the final quarter and the offense churned away the clock to give Pittsburgh a 24-0 shutout victory.

Injury Report
Roethlisberger left the game briefly with a knee injury late in the second quarter, but returned after two plays off. Mike Tomlin insists that he will be fine going forward.

Brett Keisel suffered a PCL injury and didn’t return to the game. He’ll be checked out this week.

Through the Air
Big Ben put out an entirely different performance for week one. Ben completed 22 of his 30 passes for 298 yards and a touchdown and, more importantly, didn’t turn the ball over. Mike Wallace had his second-straight eight-catch performance, racking up 126 yards and a TD in the process. Antonio Brown picked up 67 yards and Hines Ward added 33 yards on four catches each. Emmanuel Sanders contributed 44 yards on two receptions to go with a 15-yard pass completion.

On the Ground
Rashard Mendenhall was the lead dog, racking up 66 yards on 19 carries with a touchdown, but Isaac Redman also received some totes, 10 to be exact, churning out 49 yards and a touchdown of his own.

Still no turnovers for Pittsburgh’s defensive unit in the 2011 season, but it wasn’t for lack of trying (Troy missed a near pick that would have been a TD). The Steelers notched five sacks against Seattle’s Tarvaris Jackson. Troy Polamalu, Larry Foote, James Harrison, and James Farrior all had a sack, with LaMarr Woodley and Steve McLendon sharing takedown #5. Polamalu and Lawrence Timmons tied for the team lead in tackles with eight.

Special Teams
Shaun Suisham went 1-for-2 on his field goals, hitting a chip-shot 20-yarder and missing a 41-yarder. Daniel Sepulveda continued to boom the ball, averaging 58.3 yards on three punts. Antonio Brown only had one kickoff opportunity, but did average 13.5 yards on four returns with a long of 41.

Game Ball
Mike Wallace led the game with eight catches (his second straight week with that number) and is now two-for-two in breaking the century mark this season. He also made the catch of the day in the second half, adjusting to an underthrown ball and snatching it from waist level for a big gain.

Next Up
The Steelers will head to Indianapolis to face the Colts (0-2), who are now squarely in last place in the AFC South with Peyton Manning out of the lineup. The game will be broadcast on NBC’s Sunday Night football (8:20 PM kickoff).

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