2010 Pittsburgh Steelers Season in Review – Week 12


After a dominating win against their long-time West Coast rivals, the Raiders, the Steelers traveled above the Artic Circle to take on the Buffalo Bills. Okay, so it wasn’t that far north, but November in Buffalo is like the rest of Canada in November. Seriously, if there is anyplace that needs a domed stadium, it is Buffalo.

The game shouldn’t have been as close as it was. The Men of Steel were on top of their division with a 7-3 record, while the Bills were wallowing in the depths of the AFC East. They had just won two straight games after opening the season with eight losses. What were the two teams they had beaten? Detroit and Cincinnati. Not exactly the cream of the NFL crop.

Mendy Has a Very Nice Game

To be sure, it didn’t look like it was going to be much of a game. While the Bills possessed the ball four times in the first half for a total of six minutes and five seconds, resulting in three punts and the end of the half, the Steelers were running Rashard Mendenhall up and down the field. He would finish a very nice day with 151 yards and a touchdown.

Ward had 107 of Big Ben’s 246 passing yards, and the defense was their usual stingy selves against the run.

They allowed Fred Jackson to pick up 59 yards on 12 carries, which was good for an average of 4.91 yards per carry. Where he really did his damage, however, was through the air, which proved to be a recurring theme for our beloved Steelers for the entire year.

In his second game since taking over for “Skippy” Reed, Shaun Suisham was a perfect 4/4 on field goals.

Ryan Fitzpatrick Also Has a Very Nice Game

You would expect a Harvard man to be able to think his way around anything. Fitz certainly showed a lot of mettle in this game. He only completed 51% of his passes, but the 23 he completed covered 265. He had a touchdown against one pick.

Jackson caught 105 of those yards, including a catching the touchdown Fitz threw. That single play covered 65 yards.

It was the pass that wasn’t caught, however, that made all the difference in this game.

The Play That Changed the Game

The Bills would not go away, even down 13 after the first half, they clawed their way back tying the game with only seven seconds to go.

In keeping with their noble tradition of losing coin tosses in overtime, the Steelers had to kick to the Bills to start the extra frame. The teams traded possessions and with their second, the Bills drove down to the Steelers’ 40-yard line.

From there, this play happened: (Courtesy of youtube)


As is pointed out in the highlight, Stevie Johnson actually dropped five passes on the day, but none more costly than the one in overtime. That catch would have given the Bills their third consecutive win; a win over an elite team instead of one of the dregs of the league.

Fitzpatrick was sacked on the next play and the Bills were forced to punt. The punt went into the end zone and on their ensuing possession, the Steelers drove the field and Suisham calmly drove a 41-yard long nail into the Bills coffin.

I’m sure the Steelers were thanking their lucky stars for preserving a win in what situation that could have been very, very bad.