The 2009 season was a disappointment overall for Steelers fans, but it did offer up some very enjoyable and memorable plays. Below I have ranked what I believe to be the top 15 most memorable plays of the 2009 season. The countdown will start at #15 and go backwards to #1.
#15 The Big Legursky – Backup center Doug Legursky got to play fullback on a short touchdown run by Rashard Mendenhall against the Chargers. Legursky makes a nice block on the play, but it was the last time we saw him in that role in 2009.
#14 Rashard Extra Effort – Rashard Mendenhall had a great sophomore season for the Steelers and proved he can handle the role of an every down back. His second effort and ability to bounce outside made for a great touchdown run against the Raiders.
#13 Getting Ziggy With It – Rookie Ziggy Hood gets a pleasant gift after LaMarr Woodley hits Joe Flacco and the ball pops out into Hood\’s hands. The turnover all but sealed the win against the Ravens in a must win game.
#12 Throwing Mewelde – Mewelde Moore showed off his passing ability against the Chargers with a bullet to Heath Miller in the back of the endzone.
#11 Big Ben Mikey Bomb Part I – Mike Wallace had only 2 catches in the game versus Green Bay. This one started the game and was the first play from scrimmage. I think we all remember his 2nd catch of the day as well. More on that later.
#10 Big Ben Mikey Bomb Part II – Big Ben Roethlisberger nearly hits rookie Mike Wallace right in stride on this long bomb for a touchdown in the final week of the season. Ben shows he still has the arm in his 16th game of the year. Wallace shows why he was a steal in the 3rd round of the 2009 draft.
#9 Dixon Shows Bootlegs – Dennis Dixon showed off his legs on a key bootleg run for a touchdown run against the Ravens. The play put the Steelers ahead in the 4th quarter and gave the Steelers a shot at winning in a tough situation.
#8 Carter Pick 6 – Tyrone Carter started in the place of Ryan Clark in Denver and showed why he is a much better free safety than strong safety. Carter picked off Broncos QB Kyle Orton and returned it for a 48 yard touchdown.
#7 Dixon Comes Of Age – Dennis Dixon really took a huge step forward in the week 12 game versus the Ravens. Dixon started in place of an injured Big Ben and Charlie Batch with limited practice snaps with the first team and played great in a hostile enviroment. Dixon showed off his strong arm with as he throws his first TD pass of his career to Santonio Holmes.
#6 Hines Steals One – In the first meeting against the Browns, Hines Ward cut in front of Santonio Holmes and caught a touchdown pass intended for Holmes. At the time, it was the longest play from scrimmage of the 2009 season.
#5 Heath Miller On His Toes – Heath Miller had a career year for the Steelers making catch after key catch. His best catch of the season probably came in the last game versus the Dolphins. Miller shows off his body control and awareness with a great catch in the back of the endzone for a touchdown.
#4 Run Woodley Run – The strip of Brett Favre by Brett Keisel led to a long and exciting rumble by LaMarr Woodley. The Vikings were driving deep in Steelers territory at the time and this was one of 3 key plays for the Steelers in an action packed game.
#3 Sly As A Fox – Keyaron Fox had a great 2009 despite playing limited snaps on defense. Fox would likely be a starting linebacker on 31 NFL teams. The interception and return for a touchdown was a huge turning point in the Vikings game.
#2 Polamalu One Handed Pick – The Troy Polamalu interception in week 1 versus the Titans was one of the best interceptions all year in the NFL. Little did we know that a little bit later in the game that Polamalu would suffer an injury that affected the entire 2009 season.
#1 Mikey Does Santonio Imitation – The touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger to rookie Mike Wallace against the Packers was reminiscent of the game winning catch Santonio Holmes made in Super Bowl XLIII. The catch was only his second off the game as well. The Steelers hopes of making the playoffs would of gone out the window had Wallace not made that catch.