Steelers Escape Dolphins


Mason Rudolph rolls out to his right. Photo: Pittsburgh Post Gazette

Greg Hillman

The Steelers score 27 unanswered points against the Dolphins on Monday Night. 


For an 0-6 team the Dolphins looked like a team on a winning streak. Right off the bat the Steelers defense seemed to handle the Fins offense. The Steelers offense on the other hand was a different story. On the second play for the Steelers Mason Rudolph threw an eroded pass that was picked off by Xavien Howard to set up the Dolphins at the Pittsburgh 26-yard line. Two minutes later Fitzpatrick threw a quick pass left on the far side to Albert Wilson to put Miami up early 7-0. 


Pittsburgh would not back down coming out for their second drive. James Conner would bust up the middle for a 25-yard gain to put the Steelers in Dolphins territory. But, penalties and miscues would be the fate of the drive. The Steelers found themselves facing a 4th and 6 from the Miami 37. A turnover on downs would give the Dolphins another boast. On a drive that would last six minutes and 68-yards the Dolphins would continue to out play the Steelers when Allen Hurns would drag defenders with him into the endzone to increase Miami’s lead to 14-0. 


On the Steelers next drive the would drive 70-yards to set up Chris Boswell for a 40-yard field goal. On the next Dolphins drive they would see a scene that used to be a good thing for them. Minkah Fitzpatrick would grab his first of two interceptions off of the other Fitzpatrick to give the Steelers a chance to score before the half. After over 15-yards of penalties the Steelers found themselves on a 3rd and 20 at the Miami 45. On a blown coverage, Mason Rudolph found Diontae Johnson cutting across the middle from left to right and 45-yards later he was in the back of the endzone to put the Steelers right back in the game before halftime 14-10. 


After a missed field goal to start the second half, Pittsburgh would quickly get the ball back thanks to Minkah Fitzpatrick’s second interception off of Ryan Fitzpatrick. The Steelers offense would not waste an opportunity to score. On a drive that lasted almost eight minutes Mason Rudolph marched the offense on a 97-yard drive. From the Miami 26 Rudolph found Juju Smith-Schuster on a one-on-one coverage in which Juju “Mossed” Chris Lammons for the score, to put the Steelers on top for the first time all night 17-14.  Later in the quarter James Conner would get on the board with a 9-yard TD run to increase Pittsburgh’s lead to 24-14. Late in the 4th quarter Chris Boswell would finish the scoring with a 41-yard field to put the Steelers up by 13. 


The Steelers showed up in the second half, scoring 27 unanswered points after falling behind 14-0 early. The Steelers escaped what could’ve been an embarrassing loss, but rallied together and kept the Dolphins winless. Mason Rudolph had a rough start but finished the night completing 20 of his 36 passes for 251-yards, 2 TDs, and 1 INT. James Conner would carry the ball 23 times for 145-yards, and 1 TD. (Conner would suffer a shoulder injury late in the game.) Juju Smith-Schuster would have 5 receptions for 103-yards and 1 TD. (Dionate Johnson would have the 3rd TD for Pittsburgh.) On the other side Ryan Fitzpatrick completed 21 of his 34 passes for 190-yards, 2 TDs, and 2 INTs. Mark Walton ran the ball 11 times for the Dolphins for 35-yards. The two Miami touchdowns came from Allen Hurns and Albert Wilson. The Steelers improve to 3-4 and keep pace in the AFC playoff picture and second place in the AFC North. Meanwhile the Dolphins fall to 0-7 and keep pace with the Bengals for the 1st Overall pick in the 2020 Draft. 


Next Week the Dolphins host the 1-6 Jets in an AFC East matchup. Meanwhile Pittsburgh will host the 5-2 Colts in game 2 of a three game home stand.