PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — It was an important win for the Steelers Thursday night as they defeated the Cleveland Browns 14-3 at Heinz Field in a much closer game than most were expecting.
However, another “W” in the win column wasn’t the main focus of the game; instead, it was a key injury to Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger that had everyone talking.
Roethlisberger was injured during a tackle in the second quarter of the game, but returned after the half to help lead the Steelers to victory.
Roethlisberger passed for 280 yards and two scores while playing the second half on basically one leg. With 2:52 remaining, he hit Antonio Brown for a 79-yard touchdown to give the Steelers their eighth win in their last nine games.
Roethlisberger will have an MRI exam today to determine the extent of the damage, though Thursday night after the win he was optimistic he’ll play when Pittsburgh travels to San Francisco on Dec. 19.
After the game, he talked about how scary it was.
“The X-rays came back negative. From what I’ve been told, it’s a high ankle sprain,” said Roethlisberger. “I thought my leg was broke honestly. It was one of the most painful things I’ve ever felt. It felt like the middle of my leg was just… they came out and grabbed it. I was asking doc if he thought it was broke and he said, ‘Let’s go get an X-ray.’ But just thankfully it wasn’t.”
Roethlisberger’s injury was a cause of great concern for the Steelers Nation.
“I didn’t think there was a chance he was coming back the way he left,” said one fan after the game. “It did look serious.”
“I saw his leg buckle and I was kind of afraid that he would be out for the rest of the game.”
But many fans were happy to see Big Ben return to the field.
“He had to find a lot of strength in himself to because it looked like he was still limping on the field.”
“He’s just a strong guy. He’s got the ability to come back and he wants to win.”
Center Maurkice Pouncey (ankle) and defensive end Ziggy Hood (groin) will spend the weekend in treatment after the critical but costly victory.
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