Berliner Tageszeitung - NFL Steelers top Bengals in overtime, Texans tie Colts

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NFL Steelers top Bengals in overtime, Texans tie Colts




NFL Steelers top Bengals in overtime, Texans tie Colts
NFL Steelers top Bengals in overtime, Texans tie Colts / Foto: © AFP

Chris Boswell kicked a 53-yard field goal as time expired in overtime to lift Pittsburgh to a 23-20 win over Cincinnati on Sunday as Houston and Indianapolis played to a rare NFL overtime tie.

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Boswell's winning kick saw the Steelers' dominant defensive performance pay off, despite a late injury to T.J. Watt -- who had one of Pittsburgh's four interceptions of Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow.

Despite near-constant pressure, Burrow shook off a slow start and brought the Bengals back from a 17-6 halftime deficit.

He hit Ja'Marr Chase with a six-yard touchdown pass with two seconds left in regulation to knot the score at 20-20 and the game went to overtime when Minkah Fitzpatrick blocked the extra-point attempt by Evan McPherson.

Fitzpatrick also returned an interception for a touchdown early in the first quarter.

McPherson and Boswell had each missed field goals in overtime before Pittsburgh quarterback Mitch Trubisky completed passes of nine, 26 and 10 yards in the final minute to set up the game-winner.

Trubisky finished with 194 yards and a touchdown, connecting on 21 of 38 passing attempts without an interception.

Burrow's four interceptions, meanwhile, were a career worst. He was sacked seven times and gave up a fumble as the Bengals -- who fell to the Los Angeles Rams in last season's Super Bowl -- joined the Rams in opening 2022 with a defeat.

Pittsburgh's victory was shadowed, however, by the late injury to Defensive Player of the Year Watt, who departed shortly before the end of regulation with an apparent pectoral muscle injury.

The first Sunday of the season saw a string of nail-biting finishes.

In Houston, Matt Ryan -- playing his first game for Indianapolis after 14 seasons in Atlanta -- directed three fourth-quarter scoring drives as he piloted a Colts' rally to force overtime against the Texans.

However, neither team could score on two overtime possessions and the game ended in a 20-20 tie.

The Texans, who had led 20-3 going into the final period of regulation, had the ball first in overtime, but had to punt after David Mills was sacked twice.

Rodrigo Blankenship missed a 42-yard field goal attempt for Indianapolis with two minutes remaining.

The Texans were forced to punt again with less than a minute remaining and Indianapolis couldn't make anything happen with the two final plays of the game.

The Texans paid tribute at the game to the memory of the victims of the May 24 shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, in which 19 children and two teachers were killed.

The Texans hosted the Uvalde high school football team and wore "Uvalde Strong" decals on their helmets.

Teams around the league also marked the 21st anniversary of the 9/11 attacks in which nearly 3,000 people were killed.

The New York Jets' home game against Baltimore opened with Jets and Ravens fans joining in the singing of the Star Spangled Banner in a moving display before the Ravens' 24-9 triumph.

- Saints shock Falcons -

In other early games, the New Orleans Saints erased a 16-point fourth-quarter deficit to stun the Atlanta Falcons 27-26.

Quarterback Jameis Winston fueled the comeback with two quick touchdown drives before Wil Lutz kicked the game-winning 51-yard field goal.

Cleveland rookie Cade York nailed a game-winning 58-yard field goal with eight seconds remaining to give the Browns a 26-24 victory over the Carolina Panthers and former Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield.

The Panthers had taken their first lead of the contest just 53 seconds earlier on Eddy Pineiro's 34-yard field goal.

K. Berger--BTZ