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Mike Tomlin not acting 'like eureka' but Steelers top 400 yards in win over Bengals

Fifty-eights games and five days after firing their offensive coordinator, the Pittsburgh Steelers were able to forge past 400 yards of offense.

It led to just one touchdown, but it was enough for the Steelers to fend off the rival Cincinnati Bengals for a crucial 16-10 win on Sunday.

"I'm not tryna to paint with a broad brush and act like eureka," Tomlin told reporters in his postgame news conference of the offense. "We did what we needed to do to win today, and we'll keep pushing."

Matt Canada was fired on Tuesday and the offense looked far different from the onset Sunday against the Bengals. The biggest takeaway was Pittsburgh producing 421 total yards and snapping a streak of 58 games without 400 yards of offense.

"It's definitely different," quarterback Kenny Pickett said. "It's a new play-caller, so you kind of get used to the flow of how he likes to call things, and that's something that we are going to continue to kind of iron out. But it felt like every drive, we were having productive drives, moving the ball really well. Some penalty things and a turnover that we wish … you want to take out. That would help us put more puts up. But overall, happy with how those guys played."

Pittsburgh's offense was hardly a work of art, but it was some hard work paying off and showing progress. The Steelers had 249 total yards in a Week 11 loss to the Cleveland Browns, but had 221 by halftime against the Bengals.

Pickett was 24 of 33 for 278 yards, his first game all season with more than 275 yards, breaking a streak of four straight games with 160 or fewer yards.

"You know, we did what we needed to do to win," Tomlin replied when asked if he was pleased with Pickett's performance. "Guys like myself and Kenny, man, we're judged based on winning and losing. And we don't run from that. We run to that, so he and I are winners today."

Najee Harris had a season-high 99 yards on 15 carries (6.6 yards per attempt) and scored his team's only touchdown -- a 5-yarder in the third quarter.

Coming into the game, the Steelers were ranked in the bottom five of the NFL in yards per play (4.7), total yards per game (280.1), first downs per game (15.9) and time of possession (27 minutes 37 seconds).

"Like I always say, this is the ultimate team game, especially offensively you need everybody," Pickett said. "All 11 working together. All 11 are on the same page in order to be successful. For myself, for the guys in the locker room, we're all really happy that we are coming out of here with a 'W.' Back up to Heinz this weekend, you know, coming up, which will be awesome to get home. A lot of positives to take from it."

In each of those metrics they showed substantial improvement Sunday: 6.2 yards per play, 421 yards of offense, 22 first downs and a season-high 37:17 time of possession.

The Steelers (7-4) were staying afloat despite terrible offensive production. While they didn't light up the scoreboard Sunday, they surely put their best feet forward with coaches Eddie Faulkner and Mike Sullivan now helming the charge.

Whether this is just a one-game bump or not remains to be seen, but the Steelers' new-found offense and the team's playoff chances find a favorable road ahead. Pittsburgh faces sub-.500 teams in three of their next four: versus the Arizona Cardinals, versus the New England Patriots, at the Indianapolis Colts and at home against these same Bengals.

It wasn't a beautiful offensive display put forth Sunday, but the Steelers' prospects are far prettier looking ahead than they were this time last week.

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