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Steelers overcome slow start to win

Late surge in first half turns tables on Texans

Will Graves Associated Press

PITTSBURGH – One dizzying sequence, and the Pittsburgh Steelers were in complete control against the Houston Texans.

Ben Roethlisberger passed for two touchdowns and wide receiver Antonio Brown added another on a gadget play during a decisive surge late in the first half, helping the Steelers rally for a 30-23 NFL win over the mistake-prone Texans on Monday night.

Pittsburgh (4-3) needed just over a minute to turn a 10-point deficit into an 11-point lead as the Texans self-destructed while losing their third straight.

Roethlisberger finished with 265 yards passing. Le’Veon Bell racked up 145 yards of total offense and rookie wide receiver Martavis Bryant caught a momentum-swinging touchdown pass in his first NFL start.

Arian Foster ran for 102 yards for Houston (3-4), but just 29 over the final three quarters. Ryan Fitzpatrick was 21 of 32 for 262 yards with two touchdowns and an interception but the Texans were undone by three turnovers.

Pittsburgh was listless for the first 25 minutes, letting Foster and Fitzpatrick do whatever they wanted as the Texans raced to a 13-0 lead.

A 44-yard Shaun Suisham field goal with 3:08 left in the half gave the Steelers a minor boost.

A strike from Roethlisberger to Bell provided a much larger one shortly after the 2-minute warning. Roethlisberger hit the versatile back for a 43-yard gain to move the ball to the Houston 35.

Roethlisberger then hit Bryant, who struggled staying healthy in the preseason and spent the first six weeks on the inactive list, with a beautiful rainbow Bryant caught at the back of the end zone to make it 13-10 with 1:27 left.

The Steelers were just getting started.

Foster fumbled deep in Houston territory two plays after Bryant’s score and the Steelers recovered. On first-and-goal, Roethlisberger flipped the ball to Brown, who was coming in motion. The Pro Bowl wide receiver then spun back around to his left and fired a strike to Lance Moore in the end zone.

Houston’s issues escalated on the next snap when Fitzpatrick’s throw over the middle was deflected into the arms of Pittsburgh defensive end Brett Keisel who returned it to the Houston 8.

Roethlisberger found Brown for a 6-yard gain and then hit Bell – who was uncovered after going in motion – for a touchdown.

The turnaround left Heinz Field euphoric and the Texans stunned.

The Steelers methodically added on in the second half, extending the lead to 14 points on a pair of Suisham field goals before a late scoring pass from Fitzpatrick to Foster provided the final margin.

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