2009 Steelers 20 at Bengals 23
Despite jumping out to an early 13-point lead and owning a statistical edge in nearly every category, the Steelers find multiple ways to lose this mistake-filled head-scratcher of a game.
That Limas Sweed drops (another) sure TD in the end zone is no surprise. Settling for FG's after driving inside the opponent's 5-yd line is also sadly no surprise. But the 4th quarter collapse for the 2nd straight week by a once-proud Steeler defense IS a surprise, and it establishes a disturbing pattern that will repeat itself thoughout 2009.
A failed 4th down conversion at the end of the half leads to a Bengals FG, and miscommunication between Ben and Holmes early in the 3rd results in a pick-6 to give the Bengals 9 easy points and keep them in the game. Despite a missed FG following Sweed's TD drop, the Steelers carry a 20-9 lead into the 4th quarter thanks to a Roethlisberger 1-yd TD on a QB sneak.
But then comes the defensive implosion. The Steelers allow the Bengals to covert three 4th down attempts, two of them coming on their marathon 16-play, 71-yd game-winning drive in the final minutes, including a back-breaking 11-yd pass over Farrior on 4th and 10 -- 4TH AND 10, people!!! -- which sets up Palmer's 4-yd TD pass to steal the win.