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Pittsburgh Steelers Lead the Cleveland Browns 14-13 at Halftime

November 25th, 2012 at 2:44 PM
By Mark Mihalko

The Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns are caught up in a typical AFC North battle. At halftime, the Steelers lead the Browns 14-13. 

'Cleveland Browns' photo (c) 2004, Chris Brown - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
The Steelers got their first score of the day from an unexpected source. After the Browns took the opening kick-off and secured a first down, the defense stepped up. On a third down play, defensive end Brett Keisel tipped a Brandon Weeden pass and Lawrence Timmons picked it off and returned it 53-yards for a touchdown. Making the score 7-0 Pittsburgh before the offense takes the field.

The Browns defense forced a turnover of their own on the Steelers first possession, when running back Rashard Mendenhall fumbled. Seven plays later, they got on the scoreboard with a Phil Dawson 39-yard field goal. The kick made the score 7-3 midway through the first quarter.

For the second time in the game, the Browns took advantage of a second fumble, this one by running back Isaac Redman to take their first lead of the game. Armed with great field position at the 10-yard line, Weeden hit tight end Jordan Cameron with a five-yard touchdown pass to make the score 10-7 midway through the second quarter.

The Browns offense came back to mount another drive in the second quarter. Using a balanced run/pass attack, they moved into scoring position and extended their lead. Dawson again capped this 10-play drive with a 32-yard field goal to make the score 13-7 with just over three minutes remaining in the first half.

After not being able to cross mid-field in the first half, the Steelers finally touched Browns territory late in the half and made it count. On a slow but effective two minute drive, the team took advantage of a 25-yard pass interference in the End Zone call on wide receiver Plaxico Burress, to set up a Chris Rainey one-yard touchdown run with less than five seconds remaining in the half to take the score to 14-13.

For most of the half, the offense has been inept against the Browns. Jonathan Dwyer leads the charge with eight carries for 21-yards, but all three running backs have lost fumbles and set the Browns up with field position. Although his numbers are not terrible, Quarterback Charlie Batch has been mostly ineffective. He has completed just 8-of-15 for 82-yards and has not had any help from Mike Wallace (zero catches).  Defensively, the team does have two sacks (Jason Worilds and James Harrison) and the Timmons interception. More importantly, they have held Trent Richardson in check with the rookie accounting for only 34 yards on 13 carries.

Injuries continue to be a story for the Steelers as they announced that Doug Legursky would start at left guard in place of Willie Colon (Knee). Colon was available for action, but has not taken the field. During the game, the defense took a hit when linebacker LaMarr Woodley left the field with an ankle injury. Although he attempted to return, he was eventually replaced by Jason Worilds.

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Tags: Brandon Weeden, Charlie Batch, Chris Rainey, Football, Jordan Cameron, LaMarr Woodley, Lawrence Timmons, NFL, Phil Dawson, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Steelers, Plaxico Burress, Willie Colon

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