Steelers 3-0 after pouding the Buccaneers 38-13 in Tampa

Raise your hand if you thought the Steelers would score 38 points in Tampa on Sunday.

That’s what I thought.

Nevertheless, the Steelers and their veteran QB Charlie Batch had a fun time in the heat down in Florida Sunday, as the Steelers scored early and often as they moved to 3-0 with a 38-13 trouncing of now 2-1 the Buccanners.

Batch was 12-for-17 for 186 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions. Things didn’t start so well, as he threw a pick on the Steelers opening drive, but two series later he got the offense moving at high speed.

He and Mike Wallace hooked up on a nifty 46-yard touchdown with 7:53 left in the first quarter to make it 7-3. The Bucs went on a long drive, which stalled late as they settled for a field goal to cut it to 7-6 early in the second quarter.

Batch went back to work, as on the next drive after three Rashard Mendenhall runs, he ran himself for 24 yards to the Bucs 24, then hit tight end Heath Miller for 21 yards to the 3. Mendenhall did the rest on the next play to make it 14-6.

After the Steelers got a turnover on the next Bucs possession, Batch went for the kill, going deep again for Wallace, and after Buccaneers CB Aquib Talib batted the ball, the Steelers wide out pulled it in for a 41-yard score to make it 21-6.

The team had one more long drive, starting at the 4:18 mark of the second quarter, the Steelers went from their own 21 to the end zone, as Batch hit Hines Ward with an 9-yard TD with :16 seconds left in the half to make it 28-6 at the half.

The second half saw Mendenhall go off, having some big runs as the team scored a field goal in the third quarter to go up 31-6, and then pull off a final big play on D in the fourth quarter to finally seal it.

On an attempted pass, Bucs QB Josh Freeman threw it on a screen Mike Williams, and James Harrison buried Williams, and Keisel, a defensive end, caught the ball and ran down the left sideline for the score on the first play of the fourth quarter for the 79-yard score to make it 38-6.

The Bucs scored a nothing TD late to make the final 38-13.

The Steelers rocked Freeman, holding him to 20-of-31 passing for just 184 yards with the interception. He also was sacked three times.

Wallace had 100 yards on three grabs for two scores, and Mendenhall had 143 yards rushing on 19 carries with a score.

The Steelers at 3-0 stay up atop the AFC North, as they enter their final game without Ben Roethlisberger next week, a huge home game vs the 2-1 Ravens.

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