Pittsburgh Steelers 24 New York Giants 20
Don’t let the final score fool you. This game should not have been that close.
The Steelers defense continued its dominance despite the absence of Troy Polamalu. Eli Manning was held to 125 yards on the afternoon and was only 10 for 24. Lawrence Timmons and LaMarr Woodley brought plenty of pressure and each had a sack for their efforts. Ike Taylor even had an interception.
You read that right. Ike Taylor actually held onto the ball for a pick.
On offense, Ben Roethlisberger had another steady game. He was 21 for 30 for 216 yards and two touchdowns. However, the star of the game had to be Isaac Redman. Redman got the start due to injuries to Rashard Mendenhall and Jonathan Dwyer, and made the most of it, rushing for 147 yards on 26 carries and one touchdown. After a dreadful start this season and numerous injuries each week, the running game has finally found its rhythm. This is the third straight week a Steelers running back has run for over a hundred yards.
The receiving corp stepped up after Antonio Brown left the game due to injury. Jerricho Cotchery made the most of his opportunities with four receptions for 50 yards. Mike Wallace had a beautiful catch and run for a 51 yard touchdown. I don’t know about you, but when Ike Taylor and Mike Wallace both hold onto the ball in the same game it makes me kind of wonder if they Myans were right and the world really is ending.
With all that said, why was this game so close? Well, the refs for one. The Steelers also making bone-headed plays also didn’t help.
Now, I hate blaming the refs on the outcome of the game. Good teams find ways to overcome bad calls. But wow, did the Giants ever receive the benefit of some bad calls. Their first touchdown was set up in part to a long pass interference call on Keenan Lewis. Lewis had good coverage on the play, but apparently “pass interference” apparently means “personal space bubble violation.” Later on in that series the Giants got new life after a goal-line stand when Ryan Clark was flagged for a “blow to to the head after the play”. Upon review of the play, Clark hit Victor Cruz in the shoulder after Taylor deflected the pass, but just before the ball hit the ground. I not only question the ref’s perception of reality, but also his perception of anatomy.
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