Le’Veon Bell rushed for a career-high 204 yards as the Pittsburgh Steelers returned to the winner’s circle with a 27-24 victory over the struggling Tennessee Titans on Monday.
The up-and-down Steelers got touchdowns from Bell and Antonio Brown in the fourth quarter to avoid another upset. Pittsburgh was coming off a 20-13 loss to the two-win New York Jets.
“I was just taking advantage of the opportunities,” Bell said. “I am so proud of the entire offence. They balled tonight.”
Roethlisberger completed 21-of-32 passes for 207 yards, one touchdown and an interception for the Steelers, who improved to 7-4.
Brown caught nine passes for 91 yards for Pittsburgh who have a bye next week.
Rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger connected on 15-of-24 passes for 263 yards, two touchdowns and an interception for the Titans, who have lost four in a row.
Bishop Sankey carried the ball 11 times for 38 yards and a score.
Playing down to the competition has been an issue this year for the Steelers, who began the season with a win-loss pattern that lasted through the first six games.
Behind 24-13, the Steelers started from their own 28 with three and a half minutes left in the third quarter.
Bell ripped off three straight runs for a total of 40 yards. Heath Miller’s 16-yard catch set up a five-yard touchdown romp by Bell on the first play of the fourth.
The Steelers then scored another touchdown to take the lead. Bell caught two passes and ran twice to move the ball to the Tennessee 12. Brown’s 12-yard touchdown grab made it 27-24 with nine minutes left in regulation.
The Pittsburgh defence forced the Titans to punt again. Markus Wheaton moved the sticks on third-and-four and Bell did the rest, as the Steelers ran the final 6:58 off the clock.
“Not a perfect night but really a great night for us in that we were down by 11 and we had an opportunity to bounce back,” Steeler coach Mike Tomlin said.