Packers score in the 1st half, but fall short in comeback attempt

Pittsburgh Steelers' Keanu Neal intercepts a pass intended for Green Bay Packers' Christian...
Pittsburgh Steelers' Keanu Neal intercepts a pass intended for Green Bay Packers' Christian Watson during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 12, 2023, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Gene J Puskar)(Gene J Puskar | AP)
Published: Nov. 12, 2023 at 3:41 PM CST
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PITTSBURGH (AP) - Steelers RB tandem Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris torched the maligned Packers defense for 183 yards rushing and two touchdowns, and the Pittsburgh Steelers denied the Green Bay Packers a late comeback to win 23-19 on Sunday.

Two teams that have struggled to generate much of anything all season - particularly in the first half - spent the opening two quarters trading scores.

The Steelers scored on each of their first three possessions, with Harris and Warren - who were introduced as co-starters before the game - racing into the end zone for touchdowns while Boswell added a 42-yard field goal that gave Pittsburgh a 17-7 advantage, just the second time all season the Steelers have led by double digits.

It was fleeting.

Love found space in a secondary missing injured All-Pro safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Green Bay - which was averaging an NFL-worst 4.5 points in the first half, scored 13. Love threw two touchdown passes, including a pretty 35-yard strike to Jayden Reed that brought the Packers to within 17-13 at the break.

The Steelers defense would buckle down in the second half. The Packers took a 19-17 lead on Anders Carlson’s field goal late in the third quarter. Unfortunately, they would then let the Steelers get into field goal range twice, making the deficit 23-19.

The Steelers defense did the rest and sealed away another one-score win for Pittsburgh.

Patrick Peterson blocked an extra point and added a tipped ball intended for Christian Watson that turned into Keanu Neal’s interception in the end zone with 3:20 remaining. Green Bay got the ball back with 59 seconds to go and drove deep into Pittsburgh territory, but Jordan Love’s last-gasp throw to the end zone was picked off by Damontae Kazee.

Kazee returned it 30 yards before stepping out of bounds with time expired. Kazee was pushed by Green Bay lineman Zach Tom, leading to Kazee running over Steelers special teams coordinator Danny Smith. A brief melee ensued before cooler heads prevailed.

Love completed 21 of 40 for 289 yards and two touchdowns, but the Packers (3-6) were unable to back up last week’s victory over the Los Angeles Rams despite outgaining the Steelers 399-324.


Steelers: LB Kwon Alexander exited in the first quarter with a leg injury and did not return.


Packers: Welcome the Los Angeles Chargers to Lambeau Field next Sunday.

Steelers: Visit the Browns next Sunday. Pittsburgh won the first meeting with Cleveland 26-22 on Sept. 18.