I firmly believe the Steelers lost this game just to spite me. Following the Bengals’ Thursday night loss to the Browns, I wrote a piece implying that the AFC North looked like it was the Steleers to lose. That prediction took into account current record, strength of remaining schedule, and how hot the team has been lately.
Then Pittsburgh went and laid an egg of their own, dropping out of the AFC North lead with a loss to the now 2-8 New York Jets.
Michael Vick looked like the Michael Vick of the old days, as he repeatedly made big plays to continue long drives throughout the football game. He extended drives with his legs, and showcased the big-play ability, exemplified by his 67 yard touchdown strike to T.J. Graham in the first half. Jace Amaro added a five-yard touchdown catch in the back of the end zone, made possible by great protection from the Jets front line.
Antonio Brown lost two fumbles and Ben Roethlisberger looked like the polar opposite of his last two games, throwing two interceptions. One came near their own 20 yard line at the start of a drive, and the other immediately ended their best shot at scoring a touchdown in the first half. Suisham was the only one capable of putting up numbers on the scoreboard before heading to the locker rooms, hitting a 53 yard field goal opposite of Nick Folks’ two short, successful FG attempts.
Although Vick didn’t put up massive numbers, he did what was necessary to win, allowing the Jets running game to involve everyone one from Ivory, to Harvin, to Johnson, Powell and himself when necessary.
The defining moment of the game was perhaps when any sign of second half Pittsburgh momentum was lot – Suisham missed a 23 yard field goal after the Steelers were unable to punch the ball in from inside the Jets 10 yard line. Following that unfruitful drive, the Jets were able to close out the fourth quarter with clock management from their effective ground game, along with a strong goal-line stand. A long touchdown with under two minutes wasn’t enough to make any difference.
Final score, Jets 20, Steelers 13