Check below for a recap of the Patriots vs Steelers Week 15 live blog, plus analysis and highlights.
— FINAL: Steelers 17, Patriots 10. Tom Brady gets the Patriots down in the red zone with a chance to score a game-tying touchdown. Unfortunately, another holding penalty drops them back 10 yards and they can’t convert on fourth-and-15, as the ball gets tipped to the turf. Steelers hold off the Patriots’ late push to earn the win and improve to 8-5-1 on the season. The Patriots, meanwhile, are 9-5 and will enter Week 16 as the No. 3 seed in the AFC.
— Q4, 2:00: Sony Michel rumbles for a first down to set the Patriots up with first-and-10 on their own 40-yard line and two minutes to go.
— Q4, 2:30: Steelers convert multiple third downs en route to a 48-yard field goal by Chris Boswell to make it 17-10. Patriots get the ball back needing to score a touchdown to tie the game. They have no timeouts left.
— Q4, 7:43: Patriots blow a golden opportunity to score. With first-and-goal at the 5-yard line, Marcus Cannon commits holding to drop them back to the 15. James White gets dropped for a loss of two yards on a screen on the next play. Then Tom Brady makes perhaps his worst throw of the season, heaving it to the right under pressure as it falls into the hands of Joe Haden, who’s able to get his feet in bounds as he catches it.
— Q4, 13:35: Duron Harmon picks up his second interception of the game, reeling in the tipped pass from Stephon Gilmore. Tom Brady and the Patriots get the ball back with a chance to take their first lead.
— Q3, 0:17: T.J. Watt picks up the first sack of the day for the Steelers, setting up a third-and-16 situation. It’s incomplete from Tom Brady to Chris Hogan, but Steelers cornerback Joe Haden draws a clear pass interference flag to give the Pats a gift first down. Some hard running by Sony Michel and Rex Burkhead rumbles the Patriots from the 50 to the 13, where they face a third-and-4 situation. Julian Edelman catches the screen but can only take it three yards. Stephen Gostkowski is good from 33 yards and it’s 14-10 Steelers.
— Q3, 8:32: Potential momentum-changing drive for the Patriots defense. The Steelers look like they’re going to march right into the end zone again, starting with a spectacular 32-yard catch for James Washington. They end up with first-and-goal from the 4-yard line, but an intentional grounding penalty by Ben Roethlisberger drops them back 10. On third down, Roethlisberger hits Vance McDonald in the end zone but his foot just barely lands out of bounds. The drive culminates with a shanked field goal by Chris Boswell from 32 yards out, keeping the score at 14-7 Steelers.
— Q3, 13:00: Steelers make quick work of the Patriots on New England’s drive to open the third quarter. After a 14-yard run by Sony Michel, the Patriots can’t convert on third-and-6 as Josh Gordon drops the ball with a good chance to get the first down. Steelers taking over with an opportunity to go up two touchdowns.
The drops are really starting to hurt the Pats offense in this game. Julian Edelman has two glaring drops, one of which would’ve set up a first-and-goal if he caught it. James White had a borderline drop on a ball thrown slightly behind him. Add Gordon’s drop to the list.
— Q2, 0:32: Patriots look to pick up a first down after Cordarrelle Patterson barely stays on his feet and rolls over the line to gain, but the replay showed that his shin was down. So on fourth-and-1, the Pats appear to be going for it – but the offense substitutes out for the punt unit before the snap, catching the Steelers a bit off guard. Steelers knee the ball to take a 14-7 lead to halftime.
— Q2, 3:11: Steelers forced to punt after strong coverage in the secondary leads to an incomplete pass for Ben Roethlisberger on third-and-2. J.C. Jackson continued his strong game against JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Stephon Gilmore made a pass breakup earlier in the series.
— Q2, 5:20: The Patriots can’t take advantage of Duron Harmon’ interception, as Tom Brady has to get rid of the ball under pressure and he’s rushed into an incompletion on third-and-5.
— Q2, 6:06: The Steelers have a quick answer for the Patriots pinning them back, starting with a 12-yard run by ex-Patriot Stevan Ridley. Ben Roethlisberger escapes pressure and hits Antonio Brown for a 24-yard strike. Jaylen Samuels follows that up with a 17-yard rumble on the ground. But two plays later, the Patriots defense finally comes up with a big play of its own as Duron Harmon is in perfect position to catch an easy interception over the middle.
— Q2, 8:32: Patriots hum along on the ground with Sony Michel, until a costly holding penalty by Trent Brown wipes out a 25-yard gain. The Pats stall out from there and they’re forced to punt after James White can’t quite reach the first down marker on a catch over the middle. Pats punt unit makes a spectacular play to pin the Steelers at the 1-yard line, as Jonathan Jones leaps into the end zone to bat the ball up then Rex Burkhead jumps to bat it into the field.
— Q2, 12:01: Steelers get a highlight-reel catch from JuJu Smith-Schuster to jump-start their next drive, which carries over to start the second quarter. A pass interference flag on Jonathan Jones sets up the Steelers with first-and-10 at the Patriots 17-yard line. Ben Roethlisberger hits Antonio Brown over the middle in the end zone for another Steelers touchdown to make it 14-7 in the second.
The flag on Jones was met with controversy, as it came out late and from an official who was far away from the play.
— Q1, 1:18: The Patriots get off to a good start on their next drive with a catch for Josh Gordon, but they stall out on the next series as both Julian Edelman and James White have drops. Patriots forced to punt after Tom Brady faces pressure up front for the first time in the game.
— Q1, 3:13: Kyle Van Noy waits for an opening and roars through untouched for a sack, which drops the Steelers back six yards. The Pats complete the defensive stop with another sack, this time a “coverage sack” as Ben Roethlisberger has nowhere to go with the ball and cornerback Jonathan Jones eventually hauls him down on the blitz.
— Q1, 6:40: Tom Brady and the Patriots couldn’t have answered the Steelers better. Tom Brady runs a double-play-action fake, which leaves Chris Hogan wide open down the field. The receiver breezes all the way to the end zone for a 63-yard touchdown. The Patriots defense didn’t look good on the opening drive, but the Steelers D was a different kind of ugly.
— Q1, 8:40: Rough start for the Patriots defense, as the Steelers go 75 yards in 6:20. Vance McDonald scores the touchdown for Pittsburgh, as he was being defended by Patrick Chung in the end zone. The Pats had zero pressure on Roethlisberger on the opening drive, and the Steelers quarterback predictably picked them apart.
The Steelers’ first series culminates in a first down on third-and-3, as Ben Roethlisberger finds Eli Rogers over the middle at the line to gain. Jaylen Samuels picks up their first big play of the game after taking a misdirection pitch and weaving his way around the seams in the Patriots defense for 25 yards. Samuels picks up another first down, this time with a catch to the right.
Jonathan Jones makes a good tackle on Steelers slot receiver Ryan Switzer, closing quickly at the 5-yard line. But McDonald makes the catch in the end zone to finish the drive on the next play.
— Steelers win opening coin toss. They have elected to receive to start the game. Patriots will get the football to start the second half.
— Patriots and Steelers inactives:
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