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Bills vs. Steelers, preseason 2014: second half open thread

Buffalo's first-team defense gave up two early touchdowns to the Steelers, and despite racking up 212 yards on offense, the first-team offense failed once again to find the end zone.

Joe Sargent

Well, that was kind of a weird half of preseason football, now, wasn't it?

The Buffalo Bills trail the Pittsburgh Steelers, 13-6, at halftime at Heinz Field. Top receiver Sammy Watkins left with a rib injury, but that didn't stop the first-team offense - which played the entire half - from racking up a respectable 212 yards of offense. EJ Manuel was responsible for 148 of that through the air, on 17-of-27 passing.

Manuel also threw an interception up the seam in the first quarter on a pass intended for Scott Chandler (rookie linebacker Ryan Shazier picked it off), and the Bills had two other drives stall on downs, including one late in the half on a fourth-and-goal from the Steelers' three-yard line. Despite the solid yardage total, the Bills were only able to muster two Dan Carpenter field goals.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the field, the Bills gave up a 76-yard touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger to Antonio Brown on their opening drive; two Bills defenders collided in coverage to give Brown separation, and a bad angle by Da'Norris Searcy led to an easy score for Pittsburgh. Roethlisberger struck again later in the first quarter with a beautifully-placed touchdown toss to Markus Wheaton, who had a step to the left back corner of the end zone on Stephon Gilmore.

Nickell Robey had a nice interception in the second quarter on second-year quarterback Landry Jones, and the Bills have held up well on the rare instances that the Steelers have run the football (eight carries, 10 yards). But the mistakes highlight a step back for a unit that had looked pretty great in the first two preseason games.

This is your open thread to discuss the second half of tonight's game. Enjoy!