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News » Reed stays busy as Steelers prevail

Reed stays busy as Steelers prevail

Reed stays busy as Steelers prevail
PITTSBURGH (AP) - Jeff Reed kicked his fourth field goal of the game and his eighth in less than a week, a 43-yarder on the last play, and the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Carolina Panthers' backups 19-16 Thursday night in the final exhibition game for both teams.

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Carolina, holding out its starters, didn't do much offensively except for three John Kasay field goals until No. 3 quarterback Brett Basanez threw a 29-yard touchdown pass to Chris Hannon with 1:54 remaining. Rather than trying to win in regulation, coach John Fox opted to kick the extra point and try for overtime - something most coaches look to avoid in games that don't count.

Steelers rookie Dennis Dixon made sure that didn't happen by going 4-for-4 for 32 yards and running 11 yards for a first down on the 47-yard drive that ended with Reed's decisive field goal.

The Steelers went 3-1 in the preseason but probably can't keep winning like this. They scored only one touchdown in their final two games, Carey Davis' 6-yard run in the first quarter, yet won both games. They beat Minnesota 12-10 on Saturday as Reed kicked four field goals, and he made four more of 41, 49, 41 and 43 yards against Carolina.

Davis' touchdown came two plays after a 37-yard pass interference penalty on Richard Marshall at the Carolina 7 during the second and final series for Pittsburgh's starters.

Maybe the Panthers' starters felt they didn't need any more work in games that don't count - in the previous two games, they outscored their opponents 58-3, including a 47-3 win against Washington on Saturday.

DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart, both of whom gained 100 yards-plus against Washington, did not get off the Panthers' bench, and none of their replacements gained even 40 yards. Carolina went 2-2 in the preseason.

Matt Moore played the first three quarters for starter Jake Delhomme, going 15-for-27 for 164 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions, before leaving with an unspecified left leg injury. Steelers safety Anthony Smith rolled into Moore's leg as he was throwing a pass late in the third quarter, and Moore was assisted to the sideline.

Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger played long enough to test a no-huddle offense, and it wasn't exactly a success. Justin Hartwig, the former Carolina center who has won the starting job in Pittsburgh, snapped prematurely on a third-and-5 play from the Pittsburgh 25 and Roethlisberger retreated to the 4 to recover the ball.

The Steelers came out in a conventional formation on their next series, but Roethlisberger did not attempt any passes before being lifted. Byron Leftwich came on to go 6-for-14 for 82 yards.

Rashard Mendenhall, Pittsburgh's first-round draft pick, gained 79 yards on 21 carries but lost another fumble - his third in two games. After he fumbled twice against Minnesota, he was forced to carry a football with him at the Steelers' practice complex, and any teammate knocking the ball from him was to get $100.

The crowd was announced at 50,485, about 15,000 below Heinz Field's capacity, but there appeared to be far fewer fans than that.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: August 29, 2008

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Damione Lewis Name: Damione Lewis
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