- Jones, Dobbs lead Steelers over Eagles 31-14
By ROB MAADDI, AP Pro Football Writer
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Malcolm Jenkins went back to raising his fist during the national anthem and Chris Long again put his arm around him as the teammates continue trying to raise awareness about racial inequality, social injustices and systematic oppression.
Landry Jones and Josh Dobbs each tossed touchdown passes and the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Philadelphia Eagles 31-14 Thursday night in the preseason opener.
But Jenkins’ decision to resume his demonstration after stopping last December drew most of the attention as the defending Super Bowl champions returned to the field.
“Everybody is waiting for what the league is going to do,” Jenkins said. “We won’t let it stop what we stand for. I was very encouraged last year with the direction and that obviously took a different turn.
“I think it’s important to utilize the platform as we can because for whatever reason, we have framed this demonstration in a negative light and often players have to defend why we feel the need to fight for everyday Americans and in actuality we’re doing the right thing.”
The league and the players’ union have yet to announce a policy for this season regarding demonstrations during the anthem after the league initially ordered everyone to stand on the sideline when “The Star-Spangled Banner” is played, or remain in the locker room.
Cornerback De’Vante Bausby also raised his fist during the anthem, and defensive end Michael Bennett walked out of the tunnel and walked toward the bench while it played. It appeared all the Steelers stood.
“Malcolm is always a guy who is doing the work in the community, backing up whatever he’s doing,” Long said.
The Eagles rested several starters, including quarterbacks Carson Wentz and Nick Foles. Nate Sudfeld threw a pair of touchdown passes and two interceptions.
Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown sat for the Steelers and Le’Veon Bell still hasn’t signed his franchise tender.
Jones completed all four of his passes for 83 yards, including a 71-yard TD pass to JuJu Smith-Schuster in the first quarter. Smith-Schuster made a leaping catch over Rasul Douglas at the 33 and ran untouched to the end zone.
Fitzgerald Toussaint had a 3-yard TD run and a 2-point conversion to give Pittsburgh a 15-8 lead. Dobbs threw a 29-yard TD pass to Damoun Patterson late in the second quarter.
“We moved the ball successfully,” Dobbs said. “It felt good to be out there.”
Sudfeld threw a perfect strike for a 63-yard TD to Shelton Gibson and fired a 15-yard TD pass to rookie Dallas Goedert. He finished 10 of 14 for 140 yards.
“I just ran my route and when I looked back, Nate stepped up and scrambled to my side and was able to hit me,” Goedert said. “A great play by him.”
Wentz still hasn’t been cleared for contact after having surgery to repair two torn ligaments in his left knee last December. Foles, the Super Bowl MVP, has missed a few practices with muscle spasms in his neck and shoulder.
Mason Rudolph, a third-round pick competing with Jones and Dobbs for the backup job to Roethlisberger, was 7 of 12 for 101 yards.
“He did a solid job in all areas,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said.
Steelers: Safety Terrell Edmunds, a first-round pick, had three tackles. Wide receiver James Washington, second-rounder, caught two passes for 44 yards.
Eagles: Goedert, a second-round pick and the team’s first selection, had four catches for 66 yards and one TD. He’ll get plenty of opportunities as the second tight end.
Ryan Shazier joined the defense in Pittsburgh’s pregame huddle, just 11 months after spinal stabilization surgery. Shazier is out for the season.
WELCOME TO FOOTBALL
Eagles rookie Jordan Mailata, an Australian rugby player drafted in the seventh round, got beat for a strip sack on his first series in the NFL. Mailata began the second half at left tackle.
HONORING FORMER EAGLES
Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie announced at halftime that two-time All-Pro defensive end Clyde Simmons and three-time Pro Bowl linebacker Seth Joyner will be inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame on Sept. 23.
Steelers: Visit the Green Bay Packers next Thursday.
Eagles: Visit the New England Patriots next Thursday.
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End of 3
Pittsburgh Steelers- 31
Philadelphia Eagles- 14
End of 1
Pittsburgh Steelers- 7
Philadelphia Eagles- 0
He went from Aliquippa to Hershey to Pittsburgh to the Super Bowl, and now it looks like he is heading into the sunset.
NFL cornerback Darrelle Revis officially announced his retirement today after an 11-year career, 8 of which were spent with the New York Jets. In his career, Revis amassed 29 interceptions, 12 recovered fumbles, and 3 defensive touchdowns. His career also had stops in Tampa Bay, Kansas City, and New England, with whom he won a Super Bowl in 2015.
Revis was a member of Aliquippa’s class of 2004, leading the football team to a 15-1 record and state championship in 2003. He also played four seasons for the University of Pittsburgh before being picked 14th overall by the Jets in the 2007 NFL Draft.
The Pittsburgh Steelers signed unrestricted free agent safety Morgan Burnett to a three-year contract. Burnett spent the last eight seasons with the Green Bay Packers, the team that drafted him in the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft, the 71st pick overall after they traded up 15 spots to select him.
Burnett played in 102 games for the Packers, starting all of them, including 12 in 2017. He missed time during the season with a hamstring injury, but returned to action to finish out the year.
Burnett amassed 683 tackles with the Packers, 485 of them solo stops, nine interceptions, 7.5 sacks, 44 passes defensed, nine fumble recoveries, including one returned for a touchdown, and eight forced fumbles. Burnett finished with 68 tackles in 2017, and in the Steelers last second 31-28 win over the Packers at Heinz Field on Nov. 26, he had nine tackles and forced a Le’Veon Bell fumble that the Packers recovered.
A seasoned veteran, Burnett wore the communication helmet for the Packers’ defense last year, making all the calls, and was referred to by people within the Packers organization as a ‘defensive coordinator’ on the field. He also brings versatility to the position, having played the slot corner.
Steelers sign LB Jon Bostic to 2-year deal
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers have signed inside linebacker Jon Bostic to a two-year contract.
Details of the deal were not disclosed and it will not be finalized until after Bostic undergoes a physical on Monday.
The 26-year-old Bostic played 14 games for Indianapolis last season, getting 97 tackles and one sack. Bostic injured his right knee against Denver in December and finished the season on injured reserve. Pittsburgh is Bostic’s fifth stop.
Bostic began his career with Chicago after being taken in the second round of the 2013 draft. He played two seasons in Chicago then one in New England before the Patriots traded him to Detroit in 2016. He missed the entire season in Detroit with a foot injury before joining the Colts.
The Steelers are in need of depth at inside linebacker with Ryan Shazier already ruled out for 2018 because of a spinal injury suffered in Cincinnati in December.
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The Pittsburgh Steelers have released veterans William Gay, Robert Golden and Mike Mitchell.
Gay has played 11 seasons in the NFL, 10 of them with the Steelers, the team that selected him in the fifth round of the 2007 NFL Draft.
Golden was signed by the Steelers as an undrafted rookie free agent in 2012, and has spent the last six years in the black and gold. He was entering the final year of a three-year contract he signed in 2016.
Mitchell, who has played nine seasons in the NFL, was entering the final year of a five-year contract.
Mitchell originally signed with the Steelers as an unrestricted free agent in 2014. He played in 61 games for the black and gold, starting all of them. Mitchell had four interceptions, four forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries and 23 passes defensed during his time with the Steelers, while also tallying 281 total tackles.
Steelers place franchise tag on Le’Veon Bell for second time
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers have put the franchise tag on All-Pro running back Le’Veon Bell for a second straight spring, putting his long-term status with the club up in the air.
Bell, a three-time Pro Bowler, accounted for 1,946 total yards and 11 touchdowns for the AFC North champions in 2017. Both Bell and Steelers management said after the season they hoped to get a contract extension done quickly, but failed to do so by Tuesday’s deadline for teams to use the franchise tag.
Bell is scheduled to make $14.54 million in 2018 if he signs the franchise tender and the two sides are unable to reach an agreement on a new deal by the 2018 opener. He opted to skip offseason workouts and training camp last summer before signing the tender on the eve of the regular season.
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Steelers 42 vs Jaguars 45
END 4TH QTR (Final)
Steelers 21 vs Jaguars 28
END 3RD QTR