Notebook: Penalties on second-half drive hurt
The Steelers played suffocating defense, holding the Raiders to 98 yards of total offense in a 20-13 loss Sunday at McAfee Coliseum. About the only complaint coach Bill Cowher could have had with his defense was the two unsportsmanlike calls it got on Oakland's first possession of the second half. The penalties by Larry Foote and Joey Porter led to Sebastian Janikowski's 41-yard field goal, which gave the Raiders a 13-6 lead. Referee Tony Corrente was concerned enough about the game getting away from the officials that after the penalties he called a timeout and addressed the Steelers in their huddle.
"We've got to keep our cool," safety Ryan Clark said, adding that every week is different as far as how much talking between players is allowed during the game. "It's a judgment call."
Clark wouldn't say what Corrente told the Steelers.
"It's all football-field talk," he said.
• Sunday's game took a toll on more than just the Steelers' playoff chances. Three players left the game with knee injuries and two of those -- outside linebacker Arnold Harrison and running back Verron Haynes -- are likely lost for the season. Cowher said Harrison and Haynes "probably" won't return this season, while starting center Jeff Hartings could also be lost for an extended period of time. Hartings exited the game in the third quarter after colliding with a Raiders defender while run blocking.
"My knee just felt like it (got) crunched," said Hartings, who will have an MRI taken on his right knee to determine the extent of the damage.
• Chris Kemoeatu started in place of Kendall Simmons at right guard after beating out the veteran last week. Chris Hoke played for Casey Hampton at nose tackle as the Pro Bowler was inactive because of a hamstring problem. Hampton had said he wouldn't miss the game, but he didn't practice for much of last week. Hoke had a pair of solo tackles in Hampton's absence and was part of a defense that recorded six sacks and allowed the Raiders to convert just 1 of 11 times on third down.
• Other Steelers inactives were linebacker James Harrison, wide receiver/kick returner Willie Reid, safety Mike Logan, running back Duce Staley, quarterback Brian St. Pierre, center Marvin Philip and offensive tackle Willie Colon. Raiders inactives were quarterback Aaron Brooks, cornerback Duane Starks, wide receiver Johnnie Morant, running back Adimchinobe Echemandu, guard Brad Badger, defensive end Kevin Huntley and tight end James Adkisson.
3 - Players who have kicked 100 or more career field goals for the Steelers. Jeff Reed joined Gary Anderson and Roy Gerela in that group Sunday after kicking a pair of field goals.
17.3 - Passer rating for Raiders quarterback Andrew Walter.
98 - Yards of total offense for the Raiders.
61.7 - Passer rating for Ben Roethlisberger.
126 - Consecutive regular-season games in which Hines Ward has caught at least one pass.
360 - Yards of total offense for the Steelers.
- Scott Brown