Chargers Left Last Box Unchecked For Steelers

By Matthew Marczi

After the Pittsburgh Steelers lost to the Miami Dolphins in Week 14 and fell to 5-8, even optimists such as myself began shoveling the dirt on a team that clearly wasn’t ready for a playoff run.

Even after the pleasant surprise of a 30-20 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, the Steelers still needed exactly six outcomes of games they had no control over to go their way over the course of the last two weeks of the season. That was of course in addition to winning their final two games.

The Steelers ended up winning those two games—last week against the Green Bay Packers and this week in a clean sweep of the Cleveland Browns.

And they damn near got those six results they needed as well.

To recap, the Steelers needed the following to happen going into the last two weeks of the season:

The Baltimore Ravens had to lose their last two games against the New England Patriots and the Bengals.

Check and double check.

The Dolphins and the New York Jets had to finish in a two-way tie so that the Jets would eliminate the Dolphins in a division tie-breaker. The Steelers would then win the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Jets.

In Week 16, the Jets had to beat the Browns just to get to 7-8, while the Dolphins had to lose to the Buffalo Bills to fall to 8-7.

Again, check and double check.

To get the 8-8 tie, the Jets had to beat the Dolphins on Sunday in Miami. They won 20-7. Mark that a check.

That’s five of the six checks the Steelers had to mark off. But then came the San Diego Chargers, who only had to lose one of their last four games to get the Steelers into the playoffs, instead of San Diego.

The Chargers were 5-7 after a loss to the Bengals on the first of December. Since then, they’ve steamrolled their competition, including a victory over Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos on the road.

Yesterday, Andy Reid fielded the Kansas City Chiefs’ minor league team and came within a foot of winning the game on a Ryan Succop 41-yard field goal with eight seconds remaining. It was wide just right. The Chiefs came up just short in overtime, and thus so too did the Steelers as their season came to an end.

Passionate Steelers fan with a bit of writing ability. Connoisseur of loud music. Follow me on Twitter @mmarczi.
  • dgh57

    No, it was the refs in the Chargers game that left one box unchecked with their apparent vision problems! Need to start having these refs see a Optometrist before each game!

    But that’s beside the point all we needed to do is win the games we’re supposed to win! Vikings, Raiders, and Dolphins to name a few.

  • r4kolb

    Thank you for your last point. That my friend is the ONLY reason we didn’t go to the playoffs!

  • dgh57

    Thanks, as the 1st part was my frustration speaking and the last part was more the realist in me speaking.

  • Bernie B Roten

    No excuses. 8-8 again. Next year is going to be worse. Gut and rebuild.

  • SteelerFanInMD

    You can also add the loss to the Tennessee Titans to the games they should have won. They did the same last year, finishing with an 8-8 record and missing the playoffs because they lost games against the Raiders, Titans and Browns. Let’s hope next year they can kick this habit.