It was a wild one at Lambeau Field on Saturday evening, when the Pittsburgh Steelers traveled to town to take on the Green Bay Packers. It was a game filled with entertaining plays and bad calls, as it came down to the wire. When the final whistle blew, Pittsburgh came away with the 38-31 win.
For both teams, the game had serious playoff implications, so they could not afford to suffer the loss.
After the Packers were able to take the lead into the half, the Steelers came out with a strong third quarter performance that included three touchdowns to retake the lead. Pittsburgh appeared to have every opportunity at solidifying their lead after a blocked field goal, but an odd ruling led to the Packers maintaining possession and retaking the lead.
The referees ruled that possession never changed on the blocked field goal and an illegal forward push gave the Packers first down inside the five. However, the replay clearly showed Steelers safety Ryan Clark gained possession of the ball and had one knee down, but Mike Tomlin learned possession is not a reviewable play.
Despite the poor ruling, Pittsburgh was able to recompose themselves and retake the lead. Shortly after their go-ahead touchdown, cornerback Cortez Allen picked off Packers quarterback Matt Flynn and returned it for a touchdown to give the Steelers a ten-point lead.
However, Green Bay came storming back and evened the score at 31 with just seven minutes to go.
Green Bay had the ball with two minutes remaining, but Matt Flynn was hit by Troy Polamalu on a scramble and the ball popped loose. Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel scooped up the ball which gave the Steelers the ball inside the Packers 20 inside of the two-minute warning.
Pittsburgh lined up for a 28-yard field goal with just one and a half minutes to play, but the Packers jumped offsides and the Steelers got a first down that would allow them to milk the clock. Two plays later, Le’Veon Bell ran in a one-yard touchdown to give the Steelers a 38-31 lead.
The Packers got a great kickoff return following the Steelers go-ahead touchdown, which gave them a great opportunity to tie up the game. Green Bay had 1:14 on the clock with no timeouts remaining, which put all of the pressure on Matt Flynn’s shoulders.
Despite a solid effort from Flynn, the Packers shot themselves in the foot with a false start that caused a ten second run-off. On the final play, Flynn sailed the ball out of the back of the endzone and the Steelers kept their playoff hopes alive.