2002 AFC Wildcard Steelers 36 vs Browns 33
mcmillenandwife
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#1
07-21-2017, 05:10 AM

2002 AFC Wildcard Steelers 36 vs Browns 33

Add "The Comeback" to the list of Cleveland playoff horrors ("The Drive" and "The Fumble") courtesy of NFL Comeback Player of the Year Tommy Maddox (30 of 48, 367 yds), who spearheads an amazing rally with 3 TD passes in the final 19 minutes as the Steelers overcome a 17-point deficit to defeat the Browns 36-33 in a thriller. In spite of having leads of 17-7 at the half, 24-7 in the third quarter and 33-21 with just over 10 minutes remaining, Cleveland's inability to run he ball and take time off the clock helps doom them. William Green, Cleveland's leading rusher, finishes with an embarrassing 30 yds on 25 carries... even more shocking when you consider that 23 of those yards came on one fluke run. Forced the throw late in the game in spite of their lead, Cleveland leaves Pittsburgh with plenty of time to cram 22 points into the 4th quarter. I've got to give a huge shout out to safety Mike Logan. With Cleveland leading 24-7 and poised to extend their lead inside the Pittsburgh 30, Mike Logan sells out to make a diving interception in which he tears his ACL, yet still gets to his feet an picks up another 15 yards on the return. Logan's pick is Cleveland's only turnover of the day, it prevents the Browns from putting the game out of reach and it leads to a Steeler TD as momentum finally begins to shift in Pittsburgh's favor. I was fortunate enough to attend this amazing game and I've never heard anything as loud as the roar of the Heinz Field crowd when Chris "Fu" Fuamatu-Ma'afala crossed the goal line on a draw from 3 yards out with 54 seconds remaining. One of my greatest personal moments as a Steelers fan. 
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MickFucci
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#2
07-21-2017, 01:25 PM

This was a miracle W. We couldn't stop the pass and if not for a drop by Northcutt it was game over. Amazing comeback and incredible game! Love the site! Thank you!
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#3
07-21-2017, 03:41 PM

Even though they had a great comeback win, I truly believe this is the game that ultimately convinced the Steelers that they needed to get a top DB in the next draft as the secondary was absolutely shredded in this game. They traded up to get Troy Polamalu and the rest is history.
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mcmillenandwife
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#4
07-21-2017, 07:13 PM

(07-21-2017, 01:25 PM)MickFucci Wrote: This was a miracle W. We couldn't stop the pass and if not for a drop by Northcutt it was game over. Amazing comeback and incredible game! Love the site! Thank you!

You are so right. I will always have a place for Dennis Northcutt in my heart. That ball was perfectly thrown, and Hank Poteat -- who had been awful the entire game (and season, for that matter) -- slipped and got bumped and was absolutely torched on that play. Thank goodness that Northcutt had Dwight Stone's hands.  Laugh

There were quite a few Browns fans at this game. There were two very vocal ones, guys who were big enough to get away with it, right behind us and they were just loudly talking $#!t the entire game. Ironically, their favorite thing to shout out seemed to be "Free Willie!!!" even though William Green couldn't do ANYTHING against the Steelers. I remember when the Browns were up 33-21 in the 4th and the Steelers had to punt, a lot of fans started to head for the exits and they were gloating, "Where 'ya goin'? Have a nice offseason!" and other trash. I couldn't believe so many so-called fans were bailing -- it always baffles me when fans leave early, regardless of the score -- and I almost felt like joining them in their jeers. But there was this guy all decked out in a $500 Steelers leather coat a few rows ahead of us who turned around red-faced and screamed at them, "You're about to see the greatest comeback of all time! You're going home losers just like you always do!" And some of the nearby crowd cheered in support and the Browns fans were like whatever and just laughed at him.

But the Browns -- unable to "free Willie"  Laugh -- failed to use up any clock and the rest is history.

At the end of the game, as Steelers fans were just going nuts -- the loudest thing I've ever heard in my life -- the boisterous Browns fans quietly left their seats and headed home. Losers again.  Wavehello  Nobody really gave them $#it because, truth be told, they had been fun to talk with during the game in spite of their trash talk. 

On a personal note, I just about blew out my vocal chords at the end of that game. I was screaming so flippin' loud. My voice was shot for the next week and a half and I can still remember trying to go through drive-thru's and not being able to be heard because all I could basically do is whisper loudly. Laugh  It was a great feeling. 

I'd have to say that being at this game was probably my greatest personal moment as a Steelers fan.  Pi_heartbeating
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mcmillenandwife
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#5
07-21-2017, 07:16 PM

(07-21-2017, 03:41 PM)Guest Wrote: Even though they had a great comeback win, I truly believe this is the game that ultimately convinced the Steelers that they needed to get a top DB in the next draft as the secondary was absolutely shredded in this game. They traded up to get Troy Polamalu and the rest is history.

Agreed, getting Polamalu was a direct response to the complete lack of pass coverage in 2002.
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#6
07-24-2017, 04:48 PM

I bet this game still haunts Cleveland & their fans because I think it set them back from progressing to becoming somewhat of a contender. If they won this game Butch Davis would've lasted longer & they might've developed & QB
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Crash
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#7
07-27-2017, 02:21 PM

Butch Davis had his chance for a QB in 2004.

He picked his buddy from The U.

Ben is Cleveland's Dan Marino.
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mcmillenandwife
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#8
07-27-2017, 09:21 PM

(07-27-2017, 02:21 PM)Crash Wrote: Ben is Cleveland's Dan Marino.


BOOM!  Rockon

Think of it, man... they took "Sod'ja" over Ben.  Laugh
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thespiritof1976
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#9
08-01-2017, 01:34 AM

Tim - I just emailed you a few links to a few more Steelers games for you to post if you'd like. Both are against the Bucs. One from 2001 and the other a MNF game from 2002.

Poor Brad Johnson got sacked ELEVEN freaking times in that 2001 game. Poor guy, lol....
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mcmillenandwife
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#10
08-01-2017, 07:09 AM

(08-01-2017, 01:34 AM)thespiritof1976 Wrote: Tim - I just emailed you a few links to a few more Steelers games for you to post if you'd like. Both are against the Bucs. One from 2001 and the other a MNF game from 2002.

Poor Brad Johnson got sacked ELEVEN freaking times in that 2001 game. Poor guy, lol....


Thanks, Sean! I've actually got the 2002 game (although I haven't converted it from VHS yet), but I snagged them all. Appreciate the heads up!
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Crash
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#11
08-03-2017, 09:28 AM

(07-27-2017, 09:21 PM)mcmillenandwife Wrote:
(07-27-2017, 02:21 PM)Crash Wrote: Ben is Cleveland's Dan Marino.


BOOM!  Rockon

Think of it, man... they took "Sod'ja" over Ben.  Laugh

Co-worker at the Erie Times News told me at the time:  

"You got a quarterback, we got a fucking Soldier."
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mcmillenandwife
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#12
08-03-2017, 10:32 AM

(08-03-2017, 09:28 AM)Crash Wrote: Co-worker at the Erie Times News told me at the time:  

"You got a quarterback, we got a fucking Soldier."


Bwaaaahahahahahahahaha!!!!   Laugh  Laugh  Laugh  Roll
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thespiritof1976
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#13
08-05-2017, 04:11 AM

(08-03-2017, 10:32 AM)mcmillenandwife Wrote:
(08-03-2017, 09:28 AM)Crash Wrote: Co-worker at the Erie Times News told me at the time:  

"You got a quarterback, we got a fucking Soldier."


Bwaaaahahahahahahahaha!!!!   Laugh  Laugh  Laugh  Roll

K2 was a punk. I believe he had a lot to do with corrupting Josh Freeman.

That said, have you guys seen this before ?

Please watch it and TRUST ME, you'll thank me later...

http://www.footballguys.com/04bang_negotiation.htm
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