Steelers
Rams
41 - 24 Final
  for this game

Steelers rout Rams, lose Parker

Dec 21, 2007 - 6:18 AM ST. LOUIS (Ticker) -- Not even playing without "Fast" Willie Parker could slow down the Pittsburgh Steelers' offense.

Ben Roethlisberger threw three touchdown passes and Parker's replacement, Najeh Davenport, rushed for 123 yards and scored two touchdowns as the Steelers posted a 41-24 victory over the St. Louis Rams on Thursday night.

Santonio Holmes caught four passes for 123 yards for Pittsburgh, which is on the brink of clinching a postseason berth.

Pittsburgh (10-5) will clinch the AFC North title should the Cleveland Browns lose to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, and will earn a wild-card berth if the Tennessee Titans lose to the New York Jets.

Thursday's victory proved costly as the Steelers lost Parker - the league's leading rusher with 1,316 yards - for the rest of the season to a fractured right fibula on the team's second play from scrimmage.

"Our heart goes out to him because he's a competitor," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. "As a football team we're not going to throw a 'pity party'. It's part of the game. People get hurt. We'll adapt and move forward. Nobody cares about our problems. They're probably glad we've got them."

But for at least one night, the Steelers made due without their All-Pro rusher. Despite his absence and Roethlisberger playing with a sore right shoulder, Pittsburgh managed a season-high 427 yards in snapping a two-game losing streak.

"Ben was great," Tomlin said. "He managed the game, took care of the ball and made big throws."

Roethlisberger completed 16-of-20 passes for 261 yards and led the Steelers to 21 consecutive points bridging the second and third quarter as Pittsburgh rallied from a 14-10 deficit. The three scoring drives totaled 212 yards on 25 plays.

"I just try to go out and get our guys in the best situation, Roethlisberger said. "We felt like we could take some shots down the field. Our receivers, a lot of people don't give them credit but they are fast."

Roethlisberger hit Nate Washington on a 33-yard fly pattern down the right sideline with 10:46 left in the first half to give Pittsburgh the lead for good, 17-14.

"We feel like we control our own destiny(playoffs)," Washington said. "It is just a situation where you have to come out and play hard. We knew that was the situation at hand and we came out and played hard today."

Davenport capped a 10-play, 78-yard drive when he hauled in a 12-yard pass from Roethlisberger with 2:07 remaining in the opening half. The Steelers' quarterback was flushed out of the pocket on the play, rolled to the right and hit Davenport in stride in the right flat. The running back broke a tackle on the sideline and scored.

"You put more pressure on yourself when something like (Parker's injury) happens," Davenport said. "In this league and in this game it is easy to point fingers when things go wrong. So I took it upon myself to put the offense on my back and carry them downhill."

Pittsburgh took the opening kickoff of the second half and marched 69 yards on 10 plays. Roethlisberger went 4-for-4 for 38 yards on the drive, and Davenport added an 18-yard run before plunging into the end zone from the 1-yard line.

"Najeh is going to be expected to do the same things that Willie (Parker) does," receiver Hines Ward said. "Our offense isn't designed around one guy. I think Najeh did a phenomenal job stepping up and doing all of the things that Willie would have done if he had been in there."

St. Louis (3-12) cut the deficit to 31-24 on a 23-yard pass from Marc Bulger to Drew Bennett with three minutes to play in the third, but Pittsburgh got a 29-yard field goal from Jeff Reed with 4:38 remaining and Ike Taylor returned an interception 51 yards one minute later to cap the scoring.

Bulger completed 18-of-35 yards for three touchdowns against two interceptions. Stephen Jackson carried 12 times for 85 yards for the Rams, who had 316 yards against the NFL's top-rated defense.

On the Steelers' fourth play of the game, Roethlisberger hit Holmes on a deep post for 83 yards and hit Washington three plays later in the right corner of the end zone for a 17-yard TD and a 7-0 lead.

"Ben told me in the huddle to be prepared and that he was going to let one rip," Holmes said. "The ball sailed so high in the air that I had to wait on it. I should have finished the play and scored."

But Bulger and the Rams responded immediately, going 59 yards on six plays, with Jackson scoring on a 12-yard screen pass. The screen was set up to the left, but Jackson cut back across the field and leaped into the right corner of the end zone to even the score.

The Steelers took a 10-7 lead on the first play of the second quarter on a 21-yard field goal by Reed. Punter Daniel Sepulveda hit Davenport for 32 yards on a 4th-and-7 at the Pittsburgh 46 to keep alive the drive.

"We don't live in our fears, we live in our hopes," said Tomlin on the fake punt. "We saw the look and we got in the situation. Daniel did a good job of throwing the ball and Najeh was Najeh."

But the Rams responded quickly again. After Derek Stanley returned the kickoff 50 yards to the Rams 49, Bulger threw a 12-yard TD pass on the fourth play of the drive to Isaac Bruce, who made a touch catch and dragged his feet just inside of the sideline in the corner of the end zone for a 14-10 lead for St. Louis.

"We played well in the first half," Bulger said. "We didn't have much in the third quarter. We knew it was a must win for (the Steelers) and they made a lot of plays, so you have to give them credit."

That TD catch moved Bruce into 13th place all-time with 84 touchdowns. His eight-yard reception later in the quarter moved him into third all-time in receiving yards. He finished the game with seven catches for 87 yards and has 14,070 yards for his career.






  • 25
    roots
    metsfan31 Added 5 roots

    Steelers vs. RamsJan 15 11:54 AM


  • NFL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 7 17 7 10 41
    ST LOUIS 7 10 7 0 24 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: PIT - TD, NATE WASHINGTON 17 YD PASS FROM BEN
    ROETHLISBERGER (JEFF REED KICK),
    4:08. Drive: 4 plays, 96 yards in
    2:27. Key plays: Roethlisberger
    83-yard pass to Holmes to St. Louis
    13 PITTSBU

    Dec 20 11:14 PM


  • NFL
    TD PIT
    IKE TAYLOR 51 YD INTERCEPTION RETURN
    (JEFF REED KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 41
    ST LOUIS 24 3:46 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 11:03 PM


  • NFL
    FG PIT
    JEFF REED 29 YD
    PITTSBURGH 34
    ST LOUIS 24 4:38 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 10:52 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 7 17 7 31
    ST LOUIS 7 10 7 24 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: PIT - TD, NATE WASHINGTON 17 YD PASS FROM BEN
    ROETHLISBERGER (JEFF REED KICK),
    4:08. Drive: 4 plays, 96 yards in
    2:27. Key plays: Roethlisberger
    83-yard pass to Holmes to St. Louis
    13

    Dec 20 10:33 PM
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    MaxOmuS Added 5 roots

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 10:26 PM


  • NFL
    TD STL
    DREW BENNETT 23 YD PASS FROM MARC BULGER
    (JEFF WILKINS KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 31
    ST LOUIS 24 3:00 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 10:23 PM


  • NFL
    TD PIT
    NAJEH DAVENPORT 1 YD RUN
    (JEFF REED KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 31
    ST LOUIS 17 9:22 LEFT, 3RD QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 10:08 PM
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    Dagrims Added 5 roots

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 9:58 PM


  • NFL
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 7 17 24
    ST LOUIS 7 10 17 HALFTIME
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: PIT - TD, NATE WASHINGTON 17 YD PASS FROM BEN
    ROETHLISBERGER (JEFF REED KICK),
    4:08. Drive: 4 plays, 96 yards in
    2:27. Key plays: Roethlisberger
    83-yard pass to Holmes to St. Louis
    13 PITT

    Dec 20 9:46 PM


  • NFL
    FG STL
    JEFF WILKINS 52 YD
    PITTSBURGH 24
    ST LOUIS 17 1:01 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 9:34 PM


  • NFL
    TD PIT
    NAJEH DAVENPORT 12 YD PASS FROM BEN ROETHLISBERGER
    (JEFF REED KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 24
    ST LOUIS 14 1:57 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 9:21 PM


  • NFL
    TD PIT
    NATE WASHINGTON 33 YD PASS FROM BEN ROETHLISBERGER
    (JEFF REED KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 17
    ST LOUIS 14 10:39 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 9:05 PM


  • NFL
    TD STL
    ISAAC BRUCE 12 YD PASS FROM MARC BULGER
    (JEFF WILKINS KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 10
    ST LOUIS 14 13:20 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 8:56 PM


  • NFL
    FG PIT
    JEFF REED 21 YD
    PITTSBURGH 10
    ST LOUIS 7 14:57 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 8:48 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 7 7
    ST LOUIS 7 7 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: PIT - TD, NATE WASHINGTON 17 YD PASS FROM BEN
    ROETHLISBERGER (JEFF REED KICK),
    4:08. Drive: 4 plays, 96 yards in
    2:27. Key plays: Roethlisberger
    83-yard pass to Holmes to St. Louis
    13

    Dec 20 8:45 PM


  • NFL
    TD STL
    STEVEN JACKSON 12 YD PASS FROM MARC BULGER
    (JEFF WILKINS KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 7
    ST LOUIS 7 7:14 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 8:33 PM


  • NFL
    TD PIT
    NATE WASHINGTON 17 YD PASS FROM BEN ROETHLISBERGER
    (JEFF REED KICK)
    PITTSBURGH 7
    ST LOUIS 0 10:52 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 20 8:24 PM
  • 10
    roots
    aqualung1 Added 5 roots

    Steelers vs. RamsDec 4 11:42 AM
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    scooch98 Added 5 roots

    Steelers vs. RamsNov 29 8:27 PM