JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Vance McDonald's touchdown is probably the prettiest photo from the Steelers' 20-16 win over the Jaguars, but JuJu Smith-Schuster's pair of acrobatic receptions are the big highlights on the afternoon. Well, second to Ben Roethlisberger's individual effort to secure the win, that is.
The first time JuJu impressed in front of his own bench was a more combative catch where he got elevated and was the better physical presence at the ball, outmuscling, of all people, Jalen Ramsey. And he did so with an eerie ease against one of the better cornerback talents.
That grab set up the touchdown toss to McDonald, who should not be anything close to a surprise at this point. All the guy does is compete for balls in the air or drag defenders for yards at a time to make game-altering plays.
This touchdown was the definition of a power forward going hard to the rim. The defender, Telvin Smith, couldn't get enough of his arm between McDonald's hands and allowed the touchdown. Ironically, it was Smith who was chirping Roethlisberger after each of No. 7's interceptions, and who was beaten by McDonald's will to win.
The truly key play, and most impressive catch, during the win happened when JuJu again made an adjustment and again came down with a pretty remarkable catch. This time, it was a back shoulder throw from Roethlisberger that forced his receiver well into the air. JuJu made the catch and set up the remainder of the final drive to win the game.
Roethlisberger had this to say of JuJu at the podium after the game:
"The play that kind of sticks in my head right now is kind of JuJu on the sideline, the back-shoulder fade. A huge play. I tip my cap to him. We moved him around and put him in spots to win and he won for us. I told him that. I always give my line the credit. They’re the ones who make it go for us. But I think JuJu was kind of the hero today."
He didn't save the sentiment for the podium, either. Roethlisberger could be heard on the field at the end of the game applauding JuJu with, "You made this happen."
He sure did.
Three photos lead this Sunday's Best: JuJu's play of the game, according to his quarterback, then his grab to set up McDonald and, finally, McDonald's display of power.
Following those, as always, are the rest of the game's best images. See you guys and gals in the comments.