HOUSTON (SPORTSRADIO 610) – The Pittsburgh Steelers came into Houston looking to wrap up a first-round bye in the Playoffs and they got exactly what they wanted on Christmas Day with a 34-6 victory over the Texans on Monday.
The Steelers wasted no time getting on the board in the first few minutes on a Chris Boswell 34-yard Field Goal. On their next possession, Ben Roethlisberger led the Steelers on a 6-play touchdown drive to increase the lead to 10-0 in front of a large number of traveling Steelers fans.
The Texans struggled on offense all day, scoring no points in the first half and quarterback TJ Yates losing a fumble and an interception on 4th down in the end zone. Yates left the game late in the first half after a sack to go through the concussion protocol. That gave rookie Taylor Heinicke his first opportunity to play in the NFL. While he didn’t do much but end the half for the Texans he continued as quarterback to start the second half with the Texans down 20-0. During the first drive, Yates returned to the sideline, cleared of the concussion protocol. Heinicke would get his first completion of his career but would leave the game as the drive came to an end on a 16-yard sack and he was ruled out with a concussion shortly thereafter.
In the second half the Texans still struggled with Yates at quarterback but were able to get on the scoreboard when DeAndre Hopkins made a spectacular catch in the end zone to end the Steelers shutout. It was Hopkins 13th touchdown of the year, which leads the NFL. The Texans would go for two after the score, but Yates was incomplete looking for Hopkins.
The Steelers would add two touchdowns, sandwiching Hopkins score, in the second half to seal their victory 34-6.