The Pittsburg Steelers ardently battled the Los Angeles Chargers late, scoring 27 points in the fourth quarter. Yet, the Bolts was prepared and poised, staying in the game to secure a 41-37 victory.
Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert not only had 382 passing yards and three touchdowns, but he also registered a career high of 90 rushing yards.
“Something that really showed up with him today was his feet,” Bolts running back Austin Ekeler said about Herbert. “When stuff wasn’t clear, was breaking down, he was finding a way out, keeping us on the field, keeping us alive.”
Wide receiver Keenan Allen made nine catches for 112 yards. Wideout Mike Williams completed a 53-yard play with 2:09 left in regulation to give the Chargers the lead. Herbert noted how they ran that play throughout the game and noticed that the Steelers safeties were lenient in covering that spot of the field.
“We kind of talked about it on the sidelines after the first couple times we ran it,” Herbert said. “I told Mike (Williams) to just be ready for it and he did a great job running his route, breaking a tackle, and scoring.”
Ekeler was crowned Sunday Night Football Player of the Game for his four touchdowns. Bolts head coach Brandon Staley said that Ekeler was a threat in the run game, pass game, and pass protection.
“He’s a complete player. I think that’s the thing I love about the guy,” Staley said. “That’s how we’re trying to build this program with guys like that.”
The Steelers only had 55 yards on the ground. When their running game was thwarted by the Bolts’ defense, Pittsburg signal caller Ben Roethlisberger relied on his ariel attack to advance. He accumulated 273 yards from 28 throws, resulting in three touchdowns.
The Chargers defense haunted the Steelers throughout the first half and they were down by 17 points throughout the third quarter. A glimmer of hope came for Pittsburg when their special teams blocked a punt, putting their offensive line at the Bolts’ third-yard line.
Pittsburg tied the game at 34 with 3:24 left in regulation. However, Staley knew the Bolts had the skills to persevere.
‘’We really executed at practice this week,” Staley said. “It felt like we came in with the right intensity, the right type of focus.”
The Chargers defense forced the Steelers to kick for a field goal three times throughout the matchup. Several players spoke on how their practice sessions during the previous week made the difference.
“We knew that going into the week, we just had to have a good week of preparation,” Herbert said. “We’ve got the right guys, we got the right plan, we just had to execute.”
The Chargers will travel to battle the Denver Broncos on November 28 at 1:05pm.