Aside from being the longest day ever with that pesky time change, NFL fans flooded the @Steelers Twitter page with well wishes for their team, who were unable to travel to New York until Sunday morning thanks to the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. But when the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New York Giants took to the field at MetLife Stadium Sunday afternoon, both teams brought with them a few hours of distraction from the recent devastation of the storm.
The unavoidable butterflies in my stomach continued their aerobics routine as Pittsburgh announced inactives for the game including Troy Polamalu, Rashard Mendenhall, Jonathan Dwyer, Marcus Gilbert, Alameda Ta’amu, Charlie Batch and Stevenson Sylvester.
As always, one of my favorite parts of the game was Pittsburgh’s Coach Tomlin losing his mind on the sideline in the most tactful way I’ve ever seen in the NFL. I’ve always enjoyed his reactions to ridiculous calls and bad plays…if only there were a text bubble floating above his head. Now that would be entertaining.
The first quarter was a bit lackluster…other than a very big and very beneficial interception by Pittsburgh veteran DB Ike Taylor, his first of the season and 13th of his career. And of course, what Steeler game would be complete without Big Ben getting sacked three times in what was seemingly the shortest time period ever?
If you’ve read any of my other articles, you already know my blood was boiling. Sometimes I wonder if Ben actually gets confused and thinks that the goal of the game is to see how many sacks he can tally up. (If you must know, through the 2011 season Ben has been sacked 314 time in his career.) Cringe. On the flip side, Ben did have a great rest of the game after those infamous sacks and throwing a horrid early-game interception.
Despite my boiling bloodline, a strong balance between the two teams was evident throughout the second quarter, until the Steelers put up the first TD of the game, followed closely by the Giants scoring a TD of their own. During the third quarter, Steeler rookie and former Florida Gator Chris Rainey fell to the ground after experiencing what looked like a very painful rib injury. Players from both teams knelt in prayer for their teammate and opponent. Rainey was taken off the field for observation.
The fourth quarter belonged to the Steelers as Mike Wallace scored another TD, bringing the board to 17-20 Giants. This play was followed shortly by Emmanuel Sanders (replacing an injured Antonio Brown) flying down the field for a 63-yard return. I am convinced he has wings. Pittsburgh hit the board again late in the fourth as Isaac Redman scored.
Pittsburgh racked up another victory as the game wrapped up with a final score of 24-20.
I love New York…just not the Giants.
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