Quotebook: Steelers discuss win over Chargers

The Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the San Diego Chargers with the first 11-10 final in NFL history. Here's what the Steelers are saying:


Could you talk about that last drive?

You couldn't ask for any other drive like that. We went down, it was negated by a holding penalty, but we overcame that and went down and scored the game-winning field goal. It speaks volumes about our team. There were a lot of missed opportunities by us, nothing at the goal line, some penalties, a lot of opportunities, but it was great the way we battled and won the game. It feels good.

It was a credit to our team. We never gave up. The defense battled their tails off again, and when the offense had to make plays, we made plays.

Could you comment on the penalties?

My mom always said if you don't have anything good to say, don't say anything. So I'm not going to say anything.

Did they get the number wrong on that last hold?

I don't know. They said 86. I don't know who I was holding.

How bad did you need this?

We did need it. Now we're 7-3. In the month of November, teams are starting to separate themselves from the rest. It was a great win considering you look back at the Indianapolis game and we felt like we had that game. You guys said we had the toughest schedule but playing teams like this are only going to make us stronger for playoffs. This was a playoff atmosphere. Our fans got behind us. We're not going to blow teams out; it's going to come down to a play here, a play there. Tonight we made more plays than they did.

Forty-some passes in bad weather. Is that going to be the norm now? Or was that the way the matchup went?

I don't know. San Diego gave us some opportunities to throw the ball. We couldn't get the ball going at the goal line. But it opened some lanes up for Willie and we took advantage of it, and in the passing game I think all our receivers made plays.

Could you comment on this being the first 11-10 game in NFL history?

I don't know. I'm just glad to have a win. To be a part of history is something, but to beat San Diego, they're a great team and now we have to get ready for Thursday.

What did you see on that last third-down play?

I knew I was going to get hit. Ben just trusted me to win. He waited till the last minute to let me work for him. It was just a great trust between the quarterback and wide receiver and it turned into a great third-down conversion for us.

What's it like to have to get back up for a Thursday game?

I don't know. We're going to enjoy this. I can't answer that question till after Thursday's game against Cincinnati. This was definitely a big win for us, considering the game we had against the Colts. You just look back in the mirror and say ‘I wish I would've done this. I wish I would've done that.' The only way to get over that Colts game was to play the game that we did against San Diego. It was definitely a relief for us. Now we're 7-3 with six games left. We have a divisional game against Cincinnati and that's a big game for us.

You had three penalties. Were any of them legitimate?

Like I said, I'm not going to comment on the penalties.

What was the energy like in the huddle when you took the field for that last drive?



That's what we work on in training camp. You work on that. The play was called, designed for me to get open. I shook the linebacker and caught it. I was one-on-one with the linebacker. I like my chances in that situation.

A lot of numbers, but no touchdown. How did that happen?

We lined up in goal line and couldn't get it in. That's how it happened. It was the same execution that we didn't execute on in the Indianapolis game. We definitely got to go back and work on it and rectify that problem. This game is about wins and losses. We don't care about touchdowns or whatever. We're 7-3 now.

Mike Tomlin called out the top players last night. What was that like?

He challenged all the A players to step up. Myself, Troy, Ben, James Farrior, in a game like this you need your A players to step up and we did that today. We're 7-3 and that was our goal. We could easily be 9-1, but you live and you learn. We're starting to grow as a team. We're starting to have confidence. Each week we're getting better. We're starting to peak at the right time.


What was the attitude of the team for ‘The Drive'?

We took that attitude that we've got to will this to happen.

Was anything said in the huddle?

They set it on us. We had to get it in. The defense played so well all game.

Were the penalties working on anyone's mind?

No comment. I'm not going to jump in on that one.

Did the coach tell you guys not to comment?

No. Our paychecks say not to comment.


How were the players handling the penalties?

Oh, by about the second quarter we'd look at the clock and say, ‘Hey, it's been about two or three minutes since they called a penalty on us. One's coming and we have to overcome it.' That was something else out there.


How did it feel to finish the game with that drive?

It felt pretty good going out there and having at least one drive. We still didn't capitalize at the end. I felt we should, but we didn't. We just have to go back and work on the little things.

How important was it to have a drive like that?

It was really important. I think we came together for once in the game. We just made plays. When our number was called, I think everyone made plays and the offensive line was blocking well and Ben made some great throws.

You ran five straight times. Were you glad to hear it?

I'm a running back so I love to get the ball, especially in critical situations. When the pressure's on, I want the ball. They know that and they called the running plays.

Would you like to have gotten it at the goal line?

Oh, of course. I wanted to get it on the goal line. I wish we had more time to really put the dagger in them.

How did it feel to get out there and get another 100-yard game?

It felt really well just getting out there and feeling more normal, more like myself, instead of struggling.

You okay?

I'm all right. The whole team's banged up, but that's the name of the game.

Upset they took that last touchdown away?

It's part of the game. You know I'm a little upset, but it'll be all right. There's plenty more out there to get.

You've been wanting to get back to playing Steelers football. Was that last drive what you were talking about?

Yeah. That's the drive. Keep calling run plays; keep calling run plays. The defense knew we were going to run and they couldn't stop it. That's Steelers football.

They called a lot of passes for ‘Steelers football,' didn't they?

Yeah, we've got to capitalize more on the run so we can take out the passing.

So is 40 throws in winter weather ‘Steelers football'?

Just win.

Were there concerns about your shoulder at the goal line?

The game plan was not to get me in bad situations, so we didn't do that in goal line and a lot of short yardage. That was the game plan for my first game back. I think that was the best thing for the first game back. It's up to me if I want to keep it that way or make a change, and I'm going to make a change.

Your body feel OK?

I'm all right. I'm definitely all right. I'm just a little nicked up. As far as any major stuff, I'm all right.

Did the three WR formation give you a lot of running lanes?

Today there were a lot of lanes out there. You've got to give the offensive line a lot of credit. They really played hard and fought till the end.

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