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but is plagued by an injured groin.S

in NEUES AUS DEM AUSLAND 18.10.2019 08:53
von elaine95 | 116 Beiträge

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Ben Roethlisberger’s ribs are bruised but not broken.The Pittsburgh Steelers believe the same could be said about their wildly uneven season.Roethlisberger believes he’ll play on Sunday when New England visits Heinz Field http://www.clevelandbrownsteamonline.com/sione-takitaki-jersey , one of the few certainties for a team in search of answers thanks to a three-game losing streak, the latest setback a baffling 24-21 defeat in Oakland that included Roethlisberger missing most of the second half after taking a shot to the ribs, another late meltdown by the defense and the latest botched kick by Chris Boswell.“Whenever talking about consistent failures in recent weeks, it’s usually a multitude of things,” coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday. “It’s all of the above. We’re open to change, going to make discussions regarding change.”Starting, potentially, at placekicker.Boswell was a Pro Bowler in 2017 — a season in which he drilled three game-winning field goals — and signed a contract extension in August that runs through 2022. Yet he has struggled with consistency this season.When his left foot gave way on the final snap in Oakland, turning his potentially game-tying 40-yard attempt into a line drive that smacked into the sea of players in front of him, it marked his 11th missed kick this season (six field goals, five extra points). He missed just 13 combined kicks from 2015-17.Tomlin said the team plans “to explore options that gives us the very best chances of the ball going through the upright this weekend.” That includes holding tryouts to give others a look, though Tomlin admitted there isn’t exactly much to choose from in mid-December.“We’re cognizant of what’s available,” Tomlin said. “The prudent approach is to include Chris in those options.”There are no such questions at quarterback despite an odd sequence in Oakland that led to Roethlisberger standing on the sideline in the fourth quarter while backup Josh Dobbs tried to build on a four-point lead.The issue? Apparently an ancient X-ray machine at the Coliseum that offered no clarity on the extent of the rib injury Roethlisberger sustained while being driven into the ground late in the second quarter.Roethlisberger, team physician James Bradley and general manager Kevin Colbert spent all of halftime trying to get a clean X-ray but none surfaced.“We never had a full understanding of what the injury was,” Tomlin said. “The medical staff treated (Roethlisberger) to the best of our abilities.”Treatment that included “medicating” the 36-year-old quarterback while also keeping him out of the game as a precaution.Tomlin likened the approach to the one the team took during a wild-card game in Cincinnati three years ago in which Roethlisberger hurt his right (throwing) shoulder at the end of the third quarter.In that game, Roethlisberger stayed off the field until the Bengals rallied to take the lead in the final minutes. Roethlisberger came on and — with more than a little help from Cincinnati — helped the Steelers rally to the victory .It nearly happened again in Oakland. Roethlisberger completed all six of his passes on Pittsburgh’s penultimate drive, the last a 1-yard touchdown pass to JuJu Smith-Schuster that put Pittsburgh in front 21-17.“We would only re-insert him if we felt it was necessary Sheldrick Redwine Jersey ,” Tomlin said. “We appreciate what he was able to do … obviously it didn’t end in the way that we would like.”Roethlisberger said during his weekly radio appearance Tuesday he expects to face the Patriots (9-4).Tomlin indicated pain management will be the biggest concern. Roethlisberger rarely practices on Wednesdays and there’s a chance he could be given an additional day off.Tomlin said the team did not file a complaint with the league about the X-ray machine in Oakland and declined to use it as an excuse for any of the decision-making on the sideline or the play on the field. He’s well aware Pittsburgh’s issues extend far beyond Boswell, sloppy turf or outdated medical equipment.The defense has allowed second-half leads to get away each of the past three weeks. The Raiders, who came in tied with San Francisco for the worst record in the league, went the length of the field twice in the final 10 minutes, just as the Los Angeles Chargers at Heinz Field did the week prior while storming back from a 16-point deficit to pull out a 33-30 victory.While Tomlin cautioned the defensive tweaks he’s considering might not be “noticeable to the naked eye” he’s aware the Steelers — their AFC North lead over Baltimore down to a half-game — are in serious need of a kick-start.“We’re not going to hope and wish,” Tomlin said. “We’re not going to go through our process in the manner of which we have and hope that the outcome changes.”NOTES: RB James Conner (ankle) could return against New England. Conner missed his first game of the season last week after getting hurt late against the Chargers. … RT Marcus Gilbert (knee) could return to practice. Gilbert hasn’t played since mid-October. The last time the Saints and Vikings hooked up, folks in Minnesota were toasting Stefon Diggs with steins of Surly, and people in Louisiana were crying in their gumbo.They get together again in prime time, a nice treat to finish off a Sunday with several intriguing matchups.New Orleans sure hopes there’s no second Minneapolis Miracle.“This is not a revenge game,” Drew Brees insists, referring to the playoff loss in January. “It’s a different season. These are new teams, even though there’s a lot of similar personnel. It’s a new season, new team, new mindset. So listen, it’s a very good opponent that we are playing on ‘Sunday Night Football’ at their place. It is a tough environment (and) a tough place to play. We understand we’re going to need our best game, our best execution to win.”The Saints (5-1) have been doing a lot of winning since they were upset by Tampa Bay in their opener. Last week they won against a playoff-caliber team at Baltimore. Now they get the Vikings (4-2-1), who have been spotty but lead the NFC North and are 14-3 at home vs. New Orleans.The Vikings might feel equipped enough to get into a shootout with Brees Kaleb McGary Jersey , but when you listen to their coach, Mike Zimmer, who has a defensive background, he knows his side will be tested. It’s uncertain if the Vikings will have end Everson Griffen available as he returns from dealing with mental issues that sidelined him for almost six weeks.“I think as the game goes on, Brees gets a much better feel of what the defense is trying to do throughout the course of the ballgame with him,” Zimmer says.“A guy like him who has seen everything — he sees everything anyway — but he’s seen so many different looks that he can kind of decipher things quickly on the move. I think that’s part of it, and he’s got good players, too. Michael Thomas is good, (Alvin) Kamara is good, (Mike) Ingram is good. They have a lot of good players.”The weekend began Thursday night with Houston’s 42-23 home victory over the Miami Dolphins. Deshaun Watson matched his career high with five touchdown passes to lead the Texans to their fifth straight victory after opening 0-3. Miami has lost two straight to drop to 4-4.Off are Dallas (3-4), Tennessee (3-4), Atlanta (3-4) and the Los Angeles Chargers (5-2).Green Bay (3-2-1) at Los Angeles Rams (7-0)Talk about shootouts, this has the makings of one.Green Bay comes off a bye, which means Aaron Rodgers is healthier and could have more targets to connect with. Still, the Packers rank fourth in passing and A-Rod has 332.8 yards passing per game and 12 touchdowns, one pick.But the Packers opened as the biggest underdog of his career. That’s because the NFL’s only unbeaten team has been unstoppable with the ball and pretty stingy without it.Oh yeah, the Packers don’t cover particularly well in the secondary.Running back Todd Gurley leads the NFL with 88 points Kendall Sheffield Jersey , 686 yards rushing, 144 carries and 956 yards from scrimmage. DE Aaron Donald co-leads with eight sacks, comes off four sacks, six tackles for loss against San Francisco.Denver (3-4) at Kansas City (6-1)The Chiefs have won six in a row in this series and, like the Rams, have a dynamic, versatile offense. But they also rank last in yardage allowed on defense, so Denver might not be totally overmatched.Chiefs coach Andy Reid won his 200th game last week vs. Cincinnati. Reid would tie Dan Reeves for eighth in NFL history with another victory. To get it, he will rely on second-year QB Patrick Mahomes, who leads the NFL in TD passes (22) and 25-yard-plus completions (26). He has a franchise-record six consecutive 300-yard passing games.Baltimore (4-3) at Carolina (4-2)Carolina exhibited its resilience and staying power by rallying from 17 points down in the fourth quarter at Philadelphia last week. It was the largest comeback in franchise history, and now the Panthers are home, where they’ve won eight straight.The challenge is huge against Baltimore, which fell at home by one point to New Orleans when Justin Tucker — only the league’s career kicking leader — missed an extra point for the first time. That final-seconds miscue shouldn’t camouflage that the Ravens lead the league in defense. Baltimore has allowed 101 points, lowest total through seven games since coach John Harbaugh took over in 2008. The Ravens have allowed the fewest yards (280.6 per game) and fewest points (14.4).Seattle (3-3) at Detroit (3-3)Two teams that started ugly and have begun to look a lot more attractive.Seattle has gone physical with the run game and on defense and, despite being in retooling mode, seems ready to challenge for a wild-card playoff berth. Pete Carroll’s bunch protects the ball, too John Cominsky Jersey , with only six giveaways.The Seahawks are playing for the first time since the death of owner Paul Allen.Detroit seems to have discovered a running game: Rookie Kerryon Johnson ran for a career-high 158 yards at Miami last week. But Seattle’s D is stingy on the ground.Philadelphia (3-4) vs. Jacksonville (3-4) at LondonTwo teams beginning to look ugly, particularly the Jaguars, who had locker-room discord after last week’s loss to Houston that included QB Blake Bortles getting benched. Coach Doug Marrone is sticking with Bortles for now and there was a players-only meeting Monday in hopes of clearing the air. This is the sixth straight year Jacksonville is playing a home game in London.Following their collapse against Carolina, the Eagles probably welcomed getting far out of town. It’s their first trip to London for a game.The Eagles lead the NFL in time of possession, averaging more than 33 minutes. But with Jacksonville’s secondary undermanned, Carson Wentz could look to the air. He has thrown 173 consecutive passes without an interception.New England (5-2) at Buffalo (2-5), Monday nightESPN must have liked the idea of the Bills, coming off their first playoff berth since before ESPN was created — well, not quite — against Tom Brady and the Patriots.Instead, this could be a classic rout. Consider these numbers:—The Patriots are 31-4 in the past 35 meetings.—Brady holds the NFL career wins record by a quarterback against one opponent with a 28-3 record.—New England is 7-0 in night games against the Bills.—The Patriots have scored 21 or more points in the first half in each of the past four games this season to match a franchise-best streak, and the Bills have allowed 24 or more points in the first half three times.Cleveland (2-4-1) at Pittsburgh (3-2-1)Another lopsided rivalry, though this game has some cachet because the Browns tend to play the Steelers tough before losing. They tied to open the season.The Steelers come off a bye. They have won the past 14 meetings at Heinz Field; Cleveland’s last victory in Pittsburgh came in October 2003. Plus, the Browns have lost 24 straight road games, two shy of the NFL record owned by the Lions (2007-10). And the Browns are 6-32-1 overall against Pittsburgh since 1999, when Cleveland re-entered the NFL.The Browns lead the NFL with 20 takeaways, but they have scored only 31 points off those turnovers.Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger is 22-2-1 all-time against the Browns and unbeaten at home. He’s an Ohio native.Washington (4-2) at New York Giants (1-6)The New York tabloids already are projecting which college quarterback the Giants will draft after they finish near the bottom of the standings for a second successive season. Maybe if they had anyone who could pass protect, the conversation wouldn’t be so tilted against Eli Manning Qadree Ollison Jersey , who barely has time to look downfield as he sets up to throw.In comes surprise NFC East leader Washington, which ranks fifth in defense and has one of the top candidates for Comeback Player of the Year in Adrian Peterson. The veteran has 95-plus yards rushing in four of six games.Tampa Bay (3-3) at Cincinnati (4-3)It’s natural to wonder about the Bengals‘ psyche after Cincinnati again blew a lead at home to Pittsburgh, then got hammered in Kansas City. The Bengals took the second-most-lopsided loss in coach Marvin Lewis’ 16 seasons with that 45-10 debacle at the Chiefs. They had only one drive longer than 50 yards and a season-low 239 yards gained.Tampa stopped a three-game skid as dramatically as possible. Chandler Catanzaro made a 59-yard FG — the longest in OT since 1974 — for a 26-23 win over the Browns.The Buccaneers lead the NFL in total yards per game (449.5) and yards passing per game (364).New York Jets (3-4) at Chicago (3-3)A few weeks ago, the Bears sure were representing the city of big shoulders well, reviving talk of the Monsters of the Midway on defense, looking like a burgeoning power on offense. Then came a pair of losses and the Bears plummeted from the top of the NFC North to the bottom.Chicago led the league with 18 sacks through the first four games. The Bears have one since. Star Khalil Mack has no sacks in the past two games while being limited by an ankle injury, after getting five in the first four outings.Jets first-rounder Sam Darnold is learning how difficult a rookie QB’s life can be. He’s coming off his worst game as a pro with three interceptions. The No. 3 overall draft pick leads the league with 10 interceptions to go with one of the NFL’s worst completion rates (56.1 percent) and passer ratings (74.3).Indianapolis (2-5) at Oakland (1-5)The teardown of the roster continues in Oakland, where Jon Gruden dealt his top receiver, Amari Cooper, to Dallas.Indianapolis QB Andrew Luck seeks his fifth straight game with at least three TD passes. Luck has 15 TDs in his past four games. Oakland is last in the league with seven sacks.Kicker Adam Vinatieri needs five points to break Morten Andersen’s NFL career scoring record (2,544 points) but is plagued by an injured groin.San Francisco (1-6) at Arizona (1-6)The Cardinals have won eight of the past nine in this series, including three weeks ago.San Francisco is minus-15 in turnover margin, worst in the NFL.Arizona fired offensive coordinator Mike McCoy this week, replacing him with QBs coach Byron Leftwich. Star WR Larry Fitzgerald needs 135 yards to pass Terrell Owens into second place in NFL career yards receiving.

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