PITTSBURGH - The following are the highlights and lowlights from the Pittsburgh Steelers' 31-0 victory over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday at Heinz Field:
Play of the game: With 1:58 left in the first half, the Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger completed a 4-yard pass to tight end Heath Miller on second-and-10. On the play, Roethlisberger was slammed to the ground by the Browns' Willie McGinest and D'Qwell Jackson and was on the field for nearly 15 minutes before getting strapped to a stretcher and carted off the field. Later, it was revealed he suffered a concussion.
Offensive player of the game: The Steelers' Willie Parker rushed for 116 yards on 23 carries and scored a touchdown.
Defensive player of the game: Pittsburgh safety Tyrone Carter, starting for the injured Ryan Clark, overcame an early blow to the head and intercepted two passes, including one that he returned for a touchdown.
Most telling statistic: The Browns haven't scored an offensive touchdown in 24 quarters.
Hidden statistic: Steelers coach Mike Tomlin finished the season 4-0 in replay challenges.
Best pass: Roethlisberger lofted a high, deep pass to the right sideline for Hines Ward, who eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark for the season with a 24-yard gain in the first quarter.
Worst pass: Roethlisberger didn't get much on a pass to Miller, who had a few steps on Browns safety Sean Jones at the Browns' 5-yard line in the first quarter. The ball sailed to the right, and Jones intercepted it.
Best run: Parker, in similar fashion to his Super Bowl touchdown run - although not nearly as long - broke to the outside and outraced defenders down the right sideline for a 34-yard touchdown in the second quarter.
Best catch: The Steelers' Santonio Holmes pulled in a fastball from Byron Leftwich for 11 yards on third-and-2 while being defended by cornerback Eric Wright in the third quarter.
Dropped pass: The Browns' Jamal Lewis had a pass deflect off him right into the arms of Carter, who returned it for a fourth-quarter touchdown.
Best block: Steelers guard Chris Kemoeatu got out in front of Leftwich and helped clear his way for an 8-yard touchdown run near the end of the first half.
Missed block: Browns left tackle Joe Thomas gave up a sack to the Steelers' Andre Frazier in the final two minutes of the game.
Best tackle: Pittsburgh cornerback Bryant McFadden came up to stop Cleveland quarterback Bruce Gradkowski for no gain on a scramble on third-and-3 in the first quarter. It forced a long field-goal try by the Browns' Phil Dawson, who kicked it wide left.
Best hit: McFadden blitzed from the left side and was untouched before leveling Gradkowski as he unloaded a pass. It was intercepted by Carter.
Missed tackle: Wright gave up a 21-yard reception to Ward on a short pass play where he was one-on-one with him. The play set up a Gary Russell fourth-quarter touchdown.
Best coverage: The Steelers, as a team, allowed just 26 yards passing in the game.
Best kick: The much-maligned Mitch Berger booted a 44-yard punt in the second quarter that was downed by Keyaron Fox at the Cleveland 5.
Worst kick: Berger earlier had a punt sail into the end zone from the Browns' 49-yard line.
Best moment: Roethlisberger gave a thumbs-up while being carted off into a Heinz Field tunnel while being strapped down to a stretcher.
Best decision: When compared to the Browns, the Steelers made a great choice in hiring Tomlin last year.
Worst decision: Why would a 4-11 team try a 53-yard field goal on a windy day when facing a fourth-and-3 at the opponent's 36 in a 0-0 first quarter? Maybe that's why the Browns finished 4-12.
Worst penalty: A Willie Colon holding penalty wiped out a 41-yard touchdown pass from Roethlisberger to Nate Washington in the second quarter.
Best effort: Leftwich was 7-of-12 for 80 yards in backup duty.
Unsung hero: The Heinz Field grounds crew had the field looking great for late December.
Replays: Tomlin successfully challenged a 26-yard reception by the Browns' Joshua Cribbs by having him ruled down after just 12 yards.
Buck Frank can also be reached at 946-7461.