Roethlisberger: Brown was held on pass leading to INT

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The legend (or myth) of Road Game Ben Roethlisberger reared its ugly head Sunday in what was eventually a Steelers loss.

Roethlisberger threw two interceptions, including a backbreaking pick just two yards from the end zone with 1:07 left and the game on the line. But his stat line outside of that, in what was a wacky, entertaining game, wasn't as miserable as the legend/myth would lead you to believe.

Big Ben completed 41 of 56 passes for 462 yards, one touchdown and the two aforementioned interceptions. Of those 462 yards, 189 came via connections with JuJu Smith-Schuster, who flourished in a game in which Denver did everything it could to take away Antonio Brown as an option.

Taking away Brown also included a little gamesmanship, according to Roethlisberger.

"He (Brown) got grabbed," Roethlisberger said. "They caught him and grabbed him. That is why the ball got picked. I just tried to figure out why they (the officials) didn't call it."

When viewed live, it looked as if there was either a miscommunication between Roethlisberger and Brown, or Roethlisberger's pass was simply errant, as if he trusted his arm a little too much. But the tape shows something else:

Based on the video angle from the end zone, Broncos cornerback Bradley Roby got a good hold on Brown's left arm, slightly impeding his progress and resulting in the interception. Now, was Brown really slowed by such a hold (which happens more often than you might think), or was he selling it? The world may never know.

But what we do know is there was the contact Roethlisberger described, so he's not just making excuses. That might make Steelers fans feel a little better, especially since the Broncos scored two plays after the initially ugly turnover.

Now, as for the interception on the goal line, well...

"It was a run-pass option," Roethlisberger said. "Once you are late to the handoff, you don't want to force the play. Bad things can happen. I never would have thought in a million years that a defensive lineman would get blocked off the ball that far, right into an interception. Good play by him. 'AB' (Antonio Brown) was coming. I just never would have thought that guy would make that play."

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