Big Ben throws for 5 TDs

The News-Times - - SPORTS -

PITTS­BURGH — The Pitts­burgh Steel­ers aren’t play­ing like a team miss­ing Le’Veon Bell.

Ben Roeth­lis­berger threw for 328 yards and five touch­downs, James Con­ner ran for 65 yards and a score be­fore leav­ing late with a pos­si­ble con­cus­sion and the Steel­ers pounded the Carolina Pan­thers 52-21 on Thurs­day night for their fifth straight vic­tory.

An­to­nio Brown added eight re­cep­tions for 96 yards — in­clud­ing a 53-yard touch­down in the sec­ond quar­ter — to cap an event­ful day that be­gan with the star wide re­ceiver be­ing cited for reck­less driv­ing af­ter po­lice clocked Brown’s Porsche driv­ing over 100 mph down a busy high­way in the north­ern city sub­urbs.

While Bell — a three­time Pro Bowl run­ning back who still hasn’t signed his one-year fran­chise ten­der — tweeted his thoughts as he watched on tele­vi­sion, the Steel­ers (6-2-1) rolled on with­out him. Bell has un­til next Tues­day to sign a con­tract if he wants to play this sea­son. His team­mates have long since tired of talk­ing about Bell’s sta­tus and at this point, the AFC North lead­ers ap­pear to be do­ing just fine on their own. Carolina not so much. The Pan­thers (6-3) saw their three-game win­ning streak come to an abrupt halt in a city where they’ve never won. Carolina fell to 0-4 all-time in Pitts­burgh and was never re­ally in it af­ter the Steel­ers scored 21 points in the game’s first 11 min­utes.

Cam New­ton com­pleted 23 of 29 for 193 yards and a pair of flips to Chris­tian Mc­Caf­frey that the sec­ondyear run­ning back turned into scores but New­ton’s show­down with Roeth­lis­berger never ma­te­ri­al­ized. The Steel­ers sacked New­ton five times and rarely let him get com­fort­able.

Joe Sar­gent / Getty Images

The Steel­ers’ Jaylen Sa­muels, left, cel­e­brates with James Con­ner af­ter a touch­down against the Pan­thers at Heinz Field on Thurs­day.

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