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Hobbled, humbled Steelers left reeling after crushing loss to Raiders

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    Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) is hit by Oakland Raiders outside linebacker Kevin Burnett, rear, and defensive tackle Vance Walker (98) while passing during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013. The Raiders won 21-18. (AP Photo/Ben Margot) (The Associated Press)

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    Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety Will Allen sits on the bench during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013. The Raiders won 21-18. (AP Photo/Ben Margot) (The Associated Press)

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    Pittsburgh Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham closes his eyes after missing a field goal during the third quarter of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013. (AP Photo/Ben Margot) (The Associated Press)

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    Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin watches from the sideline during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013. (AP Photo/Ben Margot) (The Associated Press)

The momentum the Pittsburgh Steelers generated during a modest two-game winning streak has vanished.

Pittsburgh limped back home early Monday morning sitting at 2-5 on the season following an ugly 21-18 loss to the Oakland Raiders. The Steelers were undone by the same mistakes that have cost them repeatedly this fall.

Pittsburgh fell behind early, struggled to protect quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and failed to get anything going on the ground.

Coach Mike Tomlin says he would have been disappointed with his team's performance even if the Steelers had somehow found a way to win. Pittsburgh has lost four of its last five against the Raiders even though Oakland hasn't posted a winning season in more than a decade.

The Steelers play again on Sunday at New England (6-2).

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org