Steelers Immaculate Reception Named Best Fourth Down Play Of All-Time

To celebrate the 4th of July on Thursday, the NFL Network had a segment dedicated to the top 10 plays all-time on fourth down, and it should come as no surprise that the Immaculate Reception was tops on the list. That topic resulted in me searching for other big plays made over the years by the Pittsburgh Steelers on fourth down.

During the Ben Roethlisberger era, there was really only one fourth-down conversion that stuck out to me, and that took place in the 2009 Week 15 win over the Green Bay Packers. In that game, Roethlisberger connected with wide receiver Santonio Holmes for 32 yards on fourth down and 7 from the Steelers own 22 yard-line with 1:14 left in regulation to keep the game-winning drive alive. You can see an animated gif of that play below and here is a video recap of that final drive in addition. Roethlisberger, in case you forgot, threw for 503 yards and three touchdowns in that game.

I was only able to research as far back as the 2000 season, and no other plays stood out to me, so here is where I need your help. Prior to the 2000 season, do you remember any big fourth-down plays made by the Steelers on offense that took place on a game-winning drive?

Steelers Ben Roethlisberger Santonio Holmes Versus Green Bay Packers Animated Gif

  • Andre Brown

    How about game tying drive? Remember was the 1997 regular season game against the Pats in Foxboro? The one where K. Henry intercepted Bledsoe late in the fourth qtr. I know Kordell completed a 4th down pass to Thigpen on the that late drive to Thigpen. Thigpen made an incredible catch keeping both feet in. I think Breuner made the TD catch; however, Thigpen made another incredible 2-pt conversion catch to send the game to OT which we won and the 2nd seed of the playoffs to go with it. One of my favorite regular season games of all time.

  • SteelersDepot

    Well done: Here is the PBP from the gamebook and I will see if I have that game in my collection to make a GIF

    4-7-NE15 (1:32) K.Stewart (shotgun) pass to Y.Thigpen, P-OOB at NE4 for 11 yards (T.Law).

  • Andre Brown

    Also, an even bigger 4th down conversion that actually fits your game winning drive criteria came in the 95 AFC Championship Game. In that drive Number 14 (I refuse to say his name) completed a crucial 4th down pass to Hasting near midfield. That play was over shadowed in that game by E. Mills 37 yd catch that came soon after. Bam scored the game winning TD. All credit goes to Malsor for thinking of this great moment first.

  • Andre Brown

    Thanks. And every please accept my apologies on the two big grammatical errors in my original post.

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    That was my favorite road game attended.

  • Steeldave

    Big Bens shoestring tackle on the Bettis fumble against the Colts.

  • steeltown

    I don’t think that was 4th down… pretty sure that was 1st and goal

  • SteelersDepot

    Another good one & here is the gamebook PBP:

    4-3-IC47 N.O’Donnell (shotgun) pass to A.Hastings to IC38 for 9 yards (J.Belser).
    Official time out at 2:00. Two-minute warning.

  • charles

    I remember that play. I kept watching for the refs to actually signal a TD and never saw them do it. It was in Oakland and of course Jack Tatum was the dirtiest player in football and John Madden the dirtiest coach. Oakland’s fans followed suit and I always thought that the refs did not want tomake the call against the Raiders out of fear of serious retribution. Tatum was a leader in using his helmet as a weapon to either hit the ball or to injure. It is amazing how things change over the years.