Kovacevic: Steelers’ defense stuck at signal


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The Steelers swarm Shaun Suisham after his winning 41-yard field goal. — GETTY

The Steelers' defense stunk.

I saw it, you saw it, and there's no denying it.

Those were the Cleveland Bleeping Browns out there. No, check that, those were the Browns with Brian Hoyer at QB not long after carrying clipboards on the South Side, with a third-round rookie back out of Towson named Terrance West filling in for injured Ben Tate, with tight end Jordan Cameron joining Tate on the bench ... and still, somehow, that sorry cast came full-throttle at the home side for the final 30 minutes of what wound up a 30-27 victory only through the grace of a buzzer-beating Shaun Suisham field goal.

Until that, the Browns' second-half drive chart showed the following grizzly progression:

  • • 80 yards, touchdown
  • • 59 yards, touchdown
  • • 75 yards, field goal
  • • 51 yards, touchdown
  • • 54 yards, punt ... but hey, they started at their 6
  • • Minus-11 yards, punt

Good thing for that last series, too, or the Steelers' 82nd season opener might have ranked No. 1 on the all-time you've-got-to-be-kidding list in light of their 27-3 lead, as well as the 24 points and 288 yards conceded after the intermission.

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