“My first time ever in Lambeau. Cold, snow, crazy game. May never get back here.” — Ben to the media, post-game.
Big Ben completed 16-of-28 passes for 167 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception in today’s game. He also had a rushing touchdown of 13-yards in the third quarter to put the team up 17 to 14. He threw two touchdown passes to Emmanuel Sanders and Matt Spaeth, and he hooked up with Antonio Brown 6 times for 105 yards.
“The sea parted for him up the middle and he took it in for the score.” — Rotoworld.com
From Alan Robinson, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:
Le’Veon Bell scored from 1 yard out with 1:25 remaining, and the Steelers turned two Green Bay turnovers into touchdowns, and overcame an inexplicable call that cost them a potential score to keep their faint playoff hopes alive with a 38-31 win Sunday over the Packers at snowy, frigid Lambeau Field.
The Steelers (7-8) trailed 21-17 after blocking a field goal only to have the officials award Green Bay the ball, but responded with two touchdowns in 18 seconds to take a 10-point lead, then overcame a Green Bay 10-point comeback in the fourth quarter.
Troy Polamalu forced a Matt Flynn fumble that defensive end Brett Keisel recovered with 1:51 remaining. Bell, who went over 100 yards for the first time in his career, scored five plays later.
The Packers appeared to be in position to tie it following Micah Hyde’s 70-yard kickoff return, but a false started penalty on a second-and-1 play from the Steelers’ 1 resulted in a 10-second runoff that greatly aided the Steelers. Flynn then threw incomplete into the end zone, and the Steelers’ held on for an improbable win.
To get into the playoffs, they must beat Browns on the Sunday, the Jets must beat the Dolphins, the Bengals must beat the Ravens and the Chiefs must beat the Chargers.
You can read more from Mr. Robinson here.
From Dejan Kovacevic, also at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:
When the Steelers were ridiculously ripped off by the refs after that blocked field goal, they met in the huddle breathing fire, per Foster: “We were steamed. I mean … wow. But you know what? We had to take control from the refs. We had to take it into our hands. We had to start knocking bodies back.”
They did that for 68 yards and a TD. Le’Veon Bell began it by hurdling the Green Bay defense for a 25-yarder, part of his 124-yard breakout.
“This team keeps fighting,” Bell said.
Heard that word a lot Sunday.
Scoff at it if you want. Scoff at the notion of looking at intangibles when so much has tangibly gone wrong. But the fact is, the Steelers are nothing without their snarl. They’ve always been a team that’s won ugly, that’s won through attrition, through attitude. And they’ll always be able to find another linebacker or left tackle, but they’ll never be able to replace that.
I’ll also take the franchise quarterback who goes on the field and gets it done. To say it yet again: This is Ben Roethlisberger’s finest season, given his performance and the context.
No one took London harder, but he answered the same way Sunday when I asked the same question as over there: Did he really believe the Steelers could still make something of this season?
“Absolutely,” he answered in a quiet moment after the media session. “I believed in the talent. I believed in the will.”
And then this…
“It’s who we are.”
You can read more from Mr. Kovacevic’s column here.
And from Dejan Kovecevic’s “Morning Java” blog:
While still on the field, Roethlisberger gave the game’s final ball to Keisel after his late sack and fumble recovery played such a big role. “I really enjoyed watching him walk off the field with that under his arm,” Ben said.
You can read more from his blog here.
You can watch video of Ben’s post-game interview here.
You can see a few photos from the game here.
Congratulations are in order…
Antonio Brown set a new franchise record for most receiving yards in a single season (1,412), and Le’Veon Bell was named Steelers Digest Player of the Week!
“Ben has 4,082 passing yards this year – the 3rd time in his career he has surpassed 4,000 passing yards in a season.” — Burt Lauten, Steelers PR via Twitter.
Photo credit: Chaz Palla/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review