Final

Patriots 23

(2-1, 1-1 away)

Steelers 20

(2-1, 1-1 home)

4:15 PM ET, September 25, 2005

 

1 2 3 4 T
NE 7 0 3 1323
PIT 10 0 3 720

Top Performers

Passing: T. Brady (NE) - 372 YDS, 1 INT

Rushing: C. Dillon (NE) - 22 CAR, 61 YDS, 2 TD

Receiving: D. Givens (NE) - 9 REC, 130 YDS

New England (1-1) at Pittsburgh (2-0)

New England (1-1) at Pittsburgh (2-0), Sunday 4:15 pm EDT

PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- The Pittsburgh Steelers snapped the New England Patriots' NFL-record 21-game winning streak last October 31. The Patriots avenged that with a win here in the AFC championship game.

On Sunday, the teams meet again with another long winning streak on the line. This one belongs to the Steelers, who have won their last 16 regular season games.

The Patriots hold the NFL record with 18 consecutive regular-season wins. Including playoffs, that streak was extended to 21 games. The Steelers ended it with a 34-20 victory.

But the Patriots got the last laugh in the AFC championship game, handing quarterback Ben Roethlisberger his first loss, and now they get a chance to halt Pittsburgh's regular season winning streak.

Roethlisberger was intercepted three times, one of which was returned 87 yards for a touchdown by safety Rodney Harrison, and Tom Brady passed for 207 yards and a pair of scores as the Patriots posted a 41-27 victory over the Steelers last January en route to their third Super Bowl title in four years.

Deion Branch caught four passes for 116 yards, including a 60-yard TD, and also scored on a 23-yard run for New England.

Branch and running back Corey Dillon did not play due to injuries in the Patriots' 34-20 loss here.

Steelers coach Bill Cowher has endured two of his four home losses here in AFC championship games to the Patriots.

Roethlisberger improved to 15-0 in regular season starts, passing for 254 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-7 win over the Houston Texans last week.

The Steelers took advantage of Houston's poor offensive line, recording eight sacks.

The Patriots are not familiar with Willie Parker, who has rushed for 272 yards in the first two games of the season for Pittsburgh while Duce Staley (knee) and Jerome Bettis (calf) recover from injuries.

Dillon rushed for 73 yards and a touchdown in last season's AFC championship game. He was held to 36 yards on 14 carries in a 27-17 loss at Carolina last week.

Matchup to watch: Patriots tight ends Daniel Graham and Ben Watson face Steelers strong safety Troy Polamalu, who had three sacks last week.

Series: Pittsburgh leads, 12-6.

Next week: New England hosts San Diego, October 2 Pittsburgh has its bye

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Passing Leaders

New EnglandCMP%YDSTDINT
T. Brady64.14109339
J. Garoppolo70.418210
PittsburghCMP%YDSTDINT
B. Roethlisberger67.14952329
R. Golden100.02500

Rushing Leaders

New EnglandCARYDSAVGTD
J. Gray894124.65
S. Vereen963914.12
PittsburghCARYDSAVGTD
L. Bell29013614.78
L. Blount652664.12

Receiving Leaders

New EnglandRECYDSAVGTD
R. Gronkowski82112413.712
J. Edelman9297210.64
PittsburghRECYDSAVGTD
A. Brown129169813.213
L. Bell8385410.33

Team Averages & NFL Ranks

TEAM OFFENSETEAMPER GAME AVERAGE
Total YardsNE
 
 352
PIT
 
 322
Yards PassingNE
 
 258
PIT
 
 183
Yards RushingNE
 
 95
PIT
 
 139
TEAM DEFENSETEAMPER GAME AVERAGE
Yards AllowedNE
 
 330
PIT
 
 284
Pass Yds AllowedNE
 
 231
PIT
 
 198
Rush Yds AllowedNE
 
 99
PIT
 
 86

Head to Head Matchups (Since 2001)

New England leads 4-1
Jan 23, 2005NE 41, @PIT 27
Oct 31, 2004NE 20, @PIT 34
Sep 9, 2002NE 30, PIT 14
Jan 27, 2002NE 24, @PIT 17