PITTSBURGH — The Steelers remained warmer than a blast furnace, extending their successful streak to 5 video games Thursday evening by way of mashing the Panthers — they entered the sport on a three-game win streak of their very own — 52-21.

Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger finished 22 of 25 throws for 328 yards and 5 touchdowns to 5 other receivers. He completed a really perfect 158.Three passer ranking for the fourth time in his 15-year profession.

Easiest sport ever, Ben?

“Neatly, should you’re having a look at stats — most definitely,” Roethlisberger mentioned. “However, you already know what? Guys make performs. I’m most effective gonna be as excellent because the linemen are and the blokes making the performs for me.”

Dressed in their Colour Rush “Darkish Knight” uniforms — you can recall Batman and Bane as soon as tore up Heinz Box — the Steelers (6-2-1) wanted little time to show the lighting out at the Panthers even after Carolina started the sport by way of chopping in the course of the Pittsburgh protection for 75 yards and a landing at the opening power.

Pittsburgh simply answered by way of scoring 24 consecutive issues, together with two touchdowns at the two performs after the Panthers’ preliminary ownership: a 75-yard landing cross from Roethlisberger to JuJu Smith-Schuster adopted by way of linebacker Vince Williams’ 17-yard landing off a Cam Newton interception at the next snap.

The victory prolonged the Steelers’ AFC North lead over Cincinnati (Five-Three) to a complete sport, whilst giving them the fourth-best report within the convention heading into the weekend. The Panthers (6-Three) fell 1½ video games in the back of the NFC South-leading New Orleans Saints, and may quickly face a problem from in the back of by way of the sizzling Atlanta Falcons.

“It’s a excellent feeling to (beat) a excellent soccer workforce,” mentioned Roethlisberger.

3 different issues we discovered:

1. This was once the primary time in Pittsburgh’s sizzling streak that RB James Conner did not rush for no less than 100 yards (65 yards, TD) — most commonly as a result of he did not want to, and in addition as a result of he was once evaluated for a concussion in the second one part. Giant Ben unfold the wealth amongst his guns exceptionally neatly — together with a 53-yard landing cross to Antonio Brown, who someway wound up single-covered by way of Carolina rookie CB Donte Jackson, that put the Steelers up 31-14 going into the part. After all, the Pittsburgh offense might be altered tremendously within the coming days with all-pro RB Le’Veon Bell anticipated to rejoin the workforce by way of Tuesday’s closing date to document if he desires to play this season.

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2. Newton and Carolina RB Christian McCaffrey appeared poised to have their approach with the Steelers in response to the preliminary march. McCaffrey racked up 60 of the 75 yards, capping it off with a 20-yard scoring cross from Newton, who is having a marketing campaign coming near his 2015 MVP effort. However the Pittsburgh protection has been resurgent all the way through the workforce’s successful streak and briefly buckled down, beginning with Williams’ select six, and stored the Panthers’ celebrity duo in large part in take a look at (although McCaffrey did additionally ranking a beauty TD in the second one quarter, he most effective totaled 78 yards after his preliminary landing). The Steelers’ particular groups additionally were given into the act. Ok Chris Boswell drilling a 50-yard box objective, and the protection unit pressured a Curtis Samuel fumble on a kickoff on the finish of the 3rd quarter that arrange every other TD to start out the overall duration. Base line: Dominant workforce effort close to the confluence of the 3 Rivers.

Three. No longer an excessively memorable evening for Pittsburgh local, Pitt and Carnegie Mellon alum and previous Steelers minority proprietor David Tepper, who purchased the Panthers from disgraced predecessor Jerry Richardson previous this 12 months and roamed the sideline ahead of kickoff. Nonetheless, he is were given a excellent workforce that merely were given steamrolled on an off evening. Then again the Panthers do want to discover ways to be triumphant at the street given they have got by no means received a playoff sport clear of Charlotte within the Cam Newton generation. They are Five-Zero at Financial institution of The usa Stadium this 12 months, however simply 1-Three clear of it.


Practice USA TODAY Sports activities’ Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis.


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