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Halftime Observations: Bengals Rolling Past Steelers, Lead 31-3

Cincinnati is hoping to sweep Pittsburgh for the first time since 2009.

CINCINNATI — The Bengals played arguably their best half of football this season. They have a 31-3 halftime lead over the Steelers. 

Cincinnati scored on their first four offensive possessions. 

Joe Burrow completed 14-of-16 passes for 154 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He also ran for a score. 

Burrow was sacked twice, but that didn't stop the offense from converting on third down. Cincinnati has converted on 4-of-5 third down attempts. 

The Bengals haven't swept the Steelers since 2009. They haven't beat Pittsburgh three-straight times since 1990. They're one half of football away from accomplishing both feats. 

Here are some halftime observations. 

Fast Start

The Bengals received the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards on 10 plays. Burrow ran for an 8-yard touchdown to give the Bengals an early 7-0 lead.

The hot start continued when Eli Apple intercepted a Ben Roethlisberger pass and returned it 50 yards. Cincinnati settled for a field goal, but they had a 10-0 lead less than nine minutes into the game. 

Watch First Half Highlights Here

Mixon Goin' Crazy

Bengals running back Joe Mixon ran for 117 yards and one touchdown on 20 first half rushing attempts. He's scored in eight-straight games. 

The Bengals established the run early and never looked back. Mixon's performance has made life much easier on Burrow, who had one of his most efficient halves of football this season. 

Run Game

The Bengals' passing game got going in the second quarter, but they established the run early. Cincinnati had 11 rushing attempts to just five passes in the first quarter. 

The offense moved the ball up and down the field. They kept the Steelers' defense off balance all half long. 

Tee Time

Tee Higgins had his best half of football this season. Not only did he have a Randy Moss-like touchdown grab, but he had multiple first down catches that helped extend drives. 

Higgins has five receptions (five targets) for 95 yards and one touchdown. 

The Bengals Will Win the Game If...

The Bengals can't turn the ball over in the second half. They've built a big lead and they're playing well in all phases. 

The Steelers will receive the second half kickoff, which gives them a chance to cut into the lead. Getting an early stop and re-establishing the momentum early in the third quarter is also critical. 

Cincinnati is running the ball well. Look for them to continue to pound the rock. If they do that and avoid any turnovers, then they should win the game. 

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