ST. LOUIS — Todd Gurley wasn't impressive in his NFL debut, but neither were his more experienced teammates.
The St. Louis Rams managed 258 yards in offense and were just 2 for 10 on third down in a 12-6 loss on Sunday to the Steelers, who were playing the majority of the second half without quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
The Rams have totaled 16 points in losses the last two weeks. They are 4 for 22 on third down during that span.
"It's early in the season, we're 1-2, the world's not ending," quarterback Nick Foles said. "They want to get better and that's what I see. My goal is to keep grinding forward and by the end of the year we'll be where we want to be."
Roethlisberger's leg got caught underneath him on a diving, sliding sack by Mark Barron early in the third. Roethlisberger will have an MRI on Monday.
Lance Kendricks dropped a potential touchdown catch late in the third and a pair of false start penalties with goal to go in the fourth quarter forced the Rams to settle for a field goal to cut the deficit to 9-6.
"A couple of penalties in the red zone hurt us a lot," Kendricks said. "It's little mistakes and not anything major that we need to improve but those little things."
A late drive with the Rams still down by three ended with a Will Allen interception after Foles overthrew Kendricks at midfield. The pick set up a field goal by Josh Scobee to put Pittsburgh ahead by six points.
"It was a forced throw," Foles said. "Our 'D' gave us another chance. We've just got to convert, that's on me."
Their last chance ended when a potential first-down catch by Kenny Britt near midfield with 1:19 to play was overturned by officials.
"Look, it's not my call," Britt said. "I made the catch and they decided I mean if it's a catch or not. It's up to them."
Both teams had running backs make debuts and Le'Veon Bell's production was far superior to that of Gurley.
Bell, who had the game's lone touchdown in the first half, had 62 yards on 19 carries. Gurley, who did not start and split time with Tre Mason, had just 9 yards on six carries.
Pittsburgh (2-1) averaged 32 points in its first two games but was held down by the Rams defense, which had five sacks.
Roethlisberger hasn't missed a game since late in 2012. He won his franchise-record 108th game, passing Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw, while going 20 of 24 for 192 yards and an interception.
Backup Michael Vick was 5 of 6 for 38 yards and had two carries for minus-2 yards.
Attendance of 52,433 included thousands of Pittsburgh faithful that still left the Edward Jones Dome more than 13,000 shy of capacity.
Antonio Brown had 11 catches for 108 yards, his third straight 100-yard receiving game.
Scobee's short field goal and a 1-yard run by Bell put Pittsburgh up 9-0 early, although it failed on the 2-point conversion for the first time in four chances when Roethlisberger threw incomplete.
The Steelers were fooled on a fake punt at midfield in the second quarter but Stedman Bailey couldn't scoop Johnny Hekker's underthrown ball before it hit the turf.
Allen said there is no extra pressure on the Steelers defense with the Roethlisberger injury.
"It's definitely a challenge for us," Allen said. "We've got to get the ball back, give more opportunities on offense, put the ball in our playmakers hands so we can score more points."
Kickoff was delayed about 26 minutes by a small fire near a corner of the south end zone from sparks emitted by a pyrotechnic display during Rams player introductions. The cleanup job was hampered by a malfunctioning wet-dry vacuum that spewed collective material back out.
Neither team made any plays near a circular between the 3 and 4-yard line.