Ben Roethlisberger led his Steelers to another win, fifth consecutive, this time against Carolina Panthers. It was a magnificent night for the veteran quarterback, who threw 5 TD passes and made it easy for his team to post a 52-21 win. In fact, it was a memorable night at Heinz Field, for all.
Asked after the match is this his best game ever, Big Ben said:
Well, if you’re looking at stats — probably,” Roethlisberger said. “But, you know what? Guys make plays. I’m only gonna be as good as the linemen are and the guys making the plays for me.”
He went 22 of 25 for 328 yards and 5 TD passes, setting numerous records. With 88% of complete passes in a game, he became No.1 in Steelers history. This was also his 6th career game with 5+ touchdowns, and he is now tying the third place on the all-time list in that category. But Big Ben became the first player in Super Bowl era who has multiple games with a perfect passer rating and 5+ TDs. And do have in mind that he spent a huge part of the last quarter resting on the bench.
Roethlisberger didn’t create just records of his own. The Steelers’ 52 points are the most in history on their Heinz Field.
Wide receiving corps has been fantastic, and how shouldn’t it be with their quarterback on fire. Antonio Brown had 6 catches for 96 yards, Ju-Ju Smith-Schuster had three for 90, while Vance McDonald had four for 44. James Conner snapped his hot-streak of games with 100+yards, but he did get one touchdown. He also suffered a concussion in the fourth quarter when he left the field and didn’t come back. The medics are monitoring his condition because he was put in the concussion protocol, and he might miss the game next week in Jacksonville.
Cam Newton was the only bright spot among the Panthers, along with Christian McCaffrey. 2015 MVP had 23 of 29 for 193 yards, two touchdown passes, and one interception. McCaffery on the other side, was his sole weapon in the attack, and the second-year running back scored all of Carolina’s three touchdowns, posting 77 rushing yards and 61 receiving.
The game started with his 75-yard touchdown on the opening drive, but that just made Steelers angry, and they responded with 24 consecutive points.
“We just got whooped, man. We just got whooped,” Newton said. “It was a humbling piece of pie. … At the end of the day, they got the win, and it’s hard, but we’ll be all right.”
Both Roethlisberger and Newton received several breathtaking hits tonight. The only difference was that the referees protected Big Ben. Eric Ried got ejected for unnecessary roughness because he hit Steelers QB in the helmet while sliding. It was a signal for a brawl to start, and Pittsburgh’s offensive linemen quickly surrounded Ried.
Meanwhile, Newton got hit in the crown of the helmet, but there were no flags on the field on that one. The Superman openly stated that there is inconsistency in the decisions made by the referees in his case.
“It is what it is,” Panthers superstar said. “Last week was a perfect example of the same scenario. I’m not here to judge what flag is called, but there is an inconsistency. I do understand that. I’ve been seeing that for a long time.”
The Panthers are no 6-3, and they travel to Detroit in 9 days time, to face the Lions. This is going to be a very important game for them, and they need to win in order to stay in the race for the playoffs. The Steelers are 7-2-1, and they have a derby in Jacksonville. Last season the Jaguars eliminated Pittsburgh in the divisional round game at Heinz Field with 45-42, and made a huge surprise. But the Jaguars are far away from last year’s form, and this presents a huge chance for Big Ben and the boys to grab another win.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.