Steelers 13

(0-1, 0-1 away)

Cardinals 21

(1-0, 1-0 home)

3:00 PM ET, August 12, 2006

U of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, AZ 

1 2 3 4 T
PIT 0 6 0 713
ARI 7 7 0 721

Big Ben plays a series, but Cards' Warner steals show

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) -- Ben Roethlisberger didn't mind that his appearance at the grand opening of the extravagant new home of the Arizona Cardinals was as brief as it was fruitless.

After what the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback has been through, simply taking the field at all was enough.

"It kind of hit me right before the kickoff," Roethlisberger said, "to sit here and say thank you that I'm able to be out here, to put on the jersey, to be in front of people and playing again two months to the day after a pretty bad accident."

Roethlisberger played one series that ended in a missed field goal.

Then his Arizona counterpart, Kurt Warner, took over, christening the place with a touchdown in the Cardinals' first drive, following it with another in a 21-13 preseason victory over the Super Bowl champs on Saturday.

A capacity crowd of 63,400 attended the unveiling of the $455 million stadium in western suburban Phoenix.

"It's an awesome stadium," Roethlisberger said, "big, loud, very nice and the field is real good."

Roethlisberger, who lobbied his way into the starting lineup two months after sustaining serious head and facial injuries in a motorcycle crash, played one series. He completed three of four passes for 29 yards, the longest an 11-yard screen pass to Verron Haynes.

Warner played most of the first half, going 9-for-13 for 118 yards. The 35-year-old former NFL and Super Bowl MVP even ran for five yards.

"For the most part I thought it was really good for the first preseason game," Warner said. "We're so much farther along from where we were last year.

Roethlisberger drove the Steelers to the Arizona 26, but drew some shouts of caution after he escaped from a near-sack by Adrian Wilson and scrambled before throwing the ball. Coach Bill Cowher came onto the field a bit to tell him to take it easy.

"I just told him in the future that considering where we are right now I would rather have him go down rather than trying to fight to get free," Cowher said.

The drive ended when Roethlisberger was sacked by Bertrand Berry on third down, and Jeff Reed's 54-yard field goal try was wide left.

"We came away with nothing on that first drive, but I'm glad from Ben's perspective," Cowher said. "He was able to get out there and I thought he made some plays."

Then the Cardinals drove for a touchdown on their first possession in their new home.

Warner was 5-for-6 for 59 yards, capped by a 5-yard touchdown pass to Bryant Johnson. Four of the completions came on third down, including a 20-yarder to Larry Fitzgerald on third-and-13 to the Pittsburgh 7.

After Reed's 48-yard field goal, Warner directed an 11-play, 71-yard touchdown drive, highlighted by Johnson's one-handed grab of a 20-yard pass. The catch came on third-and-9 at the Arizona 46.

Fullback Obafemi Ayanbadejo took a short pass from Warner and rambled 15 yards for a touchdown to put the Cardinals up 14-3 with 3:31 left in the half.

The arrival of star free agent acquisition Edgerrin James had no immediate impact on what has been a woeful Arizona running game. James carried twice, once for a 2-yard loss and once for no gain.

Not to worry, said James, who would have preferred to sit out the game entirely to wait for the regular season.

"I kind of went through the motions. I just wanted to get off the field healthy," he said. "I did my job."

With rookie Matt Leinart still unsigned, Arizona backup John Navarre was intercepted twice -- both by rookie Anthony Smith.

On the first, Navarre was hit as he threw and Smith picked it off at the Cardinals 35. Third-string quarterback Shane Boyd threw 13 yards to Quincy Morgan to set up rookie Mark Brubaker's 24-yard field goal that cut the lead to 14-6 as the half ended.

Navarre completed 11 of 15 passes for 60 yards.

"Just OK," coach Dennis Green said of the quarterback's performance. "He did some good things, made one real blunder and I think that always taints it a little bit."

Diamond Ferri ran 5 yards for Arizona's third touchdown with 9:41 to play. Omar Jacobs threw a 1-yard pass to fellow rookie Isaac Smolko for the Steelers' lone touchdown, with 1:25 to play. The Cardinals recovered the subsequent onside kick and ran out the clock.

"We got through the game with really no injuries," Cowher said. "That's the good news, but from an execution standpoint, we've got a long way to go, and I think that was very evident today."

Game notes

Many of the fans were late arrivals because of traffic jams on the surrounding streets. ... The Cardinals sold out a home game for the first time since Sept. 24, 2000, against Green Bay. They are sold out for the entire regular season. ... Leinart is the only first-round draft pick unsigned. ... The Steelers also opened Ford Field in Detroit in 2003.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Scoring Summary

ariTD2:43Bryant Johnson, 5 yd pass from Kurt Warner (Neil Rackers kick is good)
Drive info: 12 plays, 56 yds, 6:18
pitFG13:29Jeff Reed 40 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 9 plays, 54 yds, 10:56
ariTD3:39Obafemi Ayanbadejo, 15 yd pass from Kurt Warner (Neil Rackers kick is good)
Drive info: 11 plays, 70 yds, 5:25
pitFG0:02Mark Brubaker 16 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 8 plays, 29 yds, 1:06
ariTD9:45Diamond Ferri, 5 yd run (Nick Novak kick is good)
Drive info: 12 plays, 78 yds, 9:36
pitTD1:29Isaac Smolko, 15 yd pass from Omar Jacobs (Jeff Reed kick is good)
Drive info: 9 plays, 94 yds, 3:15