The Cleveland Browns hit pay dirt because the Pittsburgh Steelers cannot snap the ball right.
It had been a long 18 years since the Browns made it to the postseason, but it only took a few seconds before they got a defensive touchdown. The Steelers’ first snap of the game sailed over quarterback Ben Roethlisberger‘s head into the end zone. Big Ben made a business decision, as the depleted Browns roster gobbled up that loose football for a crazy first score of the game.
— NFL (@NFL) January 11, 2021
Cleveland has seized all momentum early in this AFC playoff game
After Maurkice Pouncey‘s atrocious snap flew over Roethlisberger’s head, Browns safety Karl Joseph recovered it two yards into the end zone for the defensive touchdown. The made Cody Parkey PAT gave the Browns a stunning 7-0 lead within the first 15 seconds of the game. It only got worse from there for the Steelers offense. Roethlisberger followed it up with an interception.
Big Ben’s errant pass landed in M.J. Stewart‘s arms seven plays into the Steelers’ next possession. This set up a short field for the Browns’ first postseason offensive series in 18 years. Baker Mayfield and the Browns did not disappoint. The third-year quarterback found wide receiver Jarvis Landry on a 40-yard dime to make it 14-0 Cleveland after another made Parkey PAT.
Pittsburgh will have to climb out of an early first-quarter hole to avoid playoff embarrassment.