(AP) Antonio Brown had a 12-yard touchdown catch and scored on a 67-yard punt return to help the Pittsburgh Steelers take a 21-0 lead over the Cincinnati Bengals after the first quarter Sunday night.
The Bengals, looking to move closer to a third straight playoff berth, were undone by a series of special teams miscues.
Le'Veon Bell scored two plays after Cincinnati punter Kevin Huber dropped a snap while standing near the goal line after the Bengals' first possession. Pittsburgh's Will Allen dropped Huber at the Cincinnati 1 and Bell bulled into the end zone on second down for his sixth touchdown of the season.
Cincinnati's issues continued on the ensuing kickoff. Officials ruled Cedric Peerman called for a fair catch at the Cincinnati 9, wiping out a lengthy return. The Bengals eventually punted, setting up the Steelers with a short field. Pittsburgh went 47 yards in eight plays, with Ben Roethlisberger buying enough time for Brown to get open for his eighth touchdown to make it 14-0.
Brown's early work wasn't done. Cincinnati punted yet again and Brown took it right up the middle, breaking a tackle at midfield on his way to the second punt return for a score in his four-year career for Pittsburgh's third touchdown of the quarter. The Steelers, who need to win out to avoid their first losing season in a decade, had been outscored 77-43 in the first quarter coming in.
Huber took a hard hit from Pittsburgh's Terence Garvin during the return. He laid on the field for several minutes before walking straight to the Cincinnati locker room with what the team called a "dental injury."
Bengals linebacker James Harrison, making his first appearance in Pittsburgh since signing with the Bengals in the offseason, left in the first quarter because of a concussion.
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