Mendenhall gives Steelers lift in return Print
Written by Admin   
Monday, 08 October 2012 01:07
NFL Headline News

 PITTSBURGH (AP) - Rashard Mendenhall's surgically repaired right knee is just fine. So too it seems is the Pittsburgh Steelers' running game.
Cutting with authority and showcasing the explosiveness that made him a vital part of Pittsburgh's offense, Mendenhall rolled up 101 total yards and a touchdown in Pittsburgh's 16-14 victory over Philadelphia on Sunday.
``Our savior is back,'' quarterback Ben Roethlisberger joked. ``We've been teasing him all week. It was great to see him out there and he did a great job.''
Playing for the first time since tearing the ACL in his right knee on New Years Day, Mendenhall revived Pittsburgh's beleaguered running game to take some of the pressure off Roethlisberger. The Steelers (2-2) came in 31st in the league in rushing yards per game and dead last in yards per carry.
Mendenhall took care of that, averaging a robust 5.8 yards on 14 carries, not including a 29-yard run wiped out by one of Pittsburgh's nine penalties.
``When I stepped out there I knew that I would be comfortable and just wanted to go out there and play the best that I could, and I was able to do that,'' Mendenhall said.
He was just as effective out of the backfield, catching two passes for 20 yards, including a 15-yard screen pass during Pittsburgh's final drive that ended with Shaun Suisham's 34-yard field goal as time expired.
``I thought he not only ran well and caught the ball, but he was a source of energy for the unit,'' said Pittsburgh coach Mike Tomlin. ``That's what great players do. They inspire those around them. I thought he did that for the group.''
Philadelphia (3-2) appeared on the verge of its third one-point win on the season when Michael Vick found Brent Celek for a 2-yard score with 6:33 remaining, but the Eagles couldn't slow down the Steelers during a methodical final drive in which Roethlisberger converted a pair of critical third downs.
``I think they just made one more play than we did, and it happens,'' said Philadelphia safety Kurt Coleman.
It's something the Eagles had done with regularity during September, when they won three games by a total of four points.
The Eagles trailed the whole way but put together a grinding 17-play, 79-yard drive at the start of the final quarter, converting a pair of risky fourth downs, including one deep inside their own territory. LeSean McCoy turned both into first downs, twisting for the necessary yardage on fourth-and-inches at the Philadelphia 30, then bulling for two yards on fourth-and-1 at the Pittsburgh 47.
``I don't know how I can say this humble ... we felt like we could drive on them,'' McCoy said.
Scoring, however, proved to be another matter.
``You're going to need to score more points, going to need to help our defense out a lot more,'' Vick said. ``And we tried to the best we can. Pittsburgh's a good football team; their record might not have shown it.''
The Steelers came in smarting following a 34-31 loss in Oakland two weeks ago before heading into a well-timed bye that allowed the defense to get healthy. Pittsburgh hoped the return of linebacker James Harrison and safety Troy Polamalu from injury would spark a defense that looked a step slow in the second half of losses to the Raiders and Broncos.
The reunion of the two stars didn't last long.
Polamalu left in the first quarter after re-aggravating a strained right calf and the Steelers lost outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley with a strained hamstring shortly thereafter.
Still, the Steelers prevented the Eagles from making big plays. Philadelphia's longest gain was all of 24 yards and Pittsburgh forced Vick to fumble three times - including one into the end zone that Steelers linebacker Larry Foote pounced on - and didn't let him get anything going with his legs.
``Our defense stood up today,'' said Steelers linebacker Lawrence Timmons. ``We really needed this win. A good team is always defined by what they do after losses.''
Pittsburgh took a 10-0 halftime lead behind a lateral from Roethlisberger to Mendenhall that the running back turned into a 13-yard touchdown. The Steelers later added 20-yard field goal by Suisham, though they missed a chance to go up two touchdowns when Jerricho Cotchery tripped going into the end zone just before Suisham's kick.
Philadelphia drew within 10-7 on a 15-yard touchdown pass from Vick to McCoy, setting up a dramatic fourth quarter in which the Steelers turned the tables on the Eagles.
``Things happen,'' Vick said. ``I wish I could take the fumble back on the goal line but you can't. Ultimately I think we put ourselves into a position to win this game and we didn't win.''
---
Follow Will Graves at www.twitter.com/WillGravesAP
 

NFL Team Pages

Top NFL Public Bets

#1 463 New Orleans Saints 78%
#2 265 Dallas Cowboys 76%
#3 485 San Francisco 49ers 75%
#4 280 San Francisco 49ers 75%
#5 255 Carolina Panthers 74%
#6 481 New England Patriots 72%
#7 488 Denver Broncos 72%
#8 262 Seattle Seahawks 71%
#9 277 Houston Texans 71%
#10 480 Kansas City Chiefs 69%
View All: NFL |  NBA |  NCAAF |  NCAAB |  MLB |  NHL

NFL Futures

NFL TEAM CONFERENCE ODDS CURRENT
DENVER BRONCOS 9/4
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 3/1
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 17/4
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS 9/2
GREEN BAY PACKERS 6/1
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS 7/1
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS 7/1
CHICAGO BEARS 15/2
PITTSBURGH STEELERS 12/1
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES 14/1
View All

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Contact Us | Advertising | 888-99-SPREAD

THIS IS NOT A GAMBLING SITE – If you think you have a gambling problem click here.

Disclaimer: This site is for informational and entertainment purposes only. Individual users are responsible for the laws regarding accessing gambling information from their jurisdictions. Many countries around the world prohibit gambling, please check the laws in your location. Any use of this information that may violate any federal, state, local or international law is strictly prohibited.

Copyright: The information contained on TheSpread.com website is protected by international copyright and may not be reproduced, or redistributed in any way without expressed written consent.

About: TheSpread.com is the largest sports betting news site in the United States. We provide point spread news, odds, statistics and information to over 199 countries around the world each year. Our coverage includes all North American College and Professional Sports as well as entertainment, political and proposition wagering news.

©1999-2013 TheSpread.com