Official website of the New England Patriots

Replay: Patriots Postgame Show Sun Sep 24 - 06:00 PM | Mon Sep 25 - 07:30 AM

Steelers eliminate Patriots, 7-6

The Patriots fumbled away an opportunity to defend their AFC title in a divisional playoff game at Pittsburgh, dropping a 7-6 decision to the Steelers.

Steeler rookie DE, Mike Vrabel, blindsided Drew Bledsoe as he was set to pass late in the fourth quarter, forcing a fumble that was recovered by Steeler LB Jason Gildon at the New England 34-yard line. The fumble ended the Patriots' comeback attempt with just 1:44 remaining in the game.
The Patriots fell behind early. On the their opening possession , Bledsoe went deep to Terry Glenn, who was open at the Steelers' 5 yard line, but the pass came up short and was intercepted by Chad Scott at the 11 and returned to the 38 yard line. The Steelers captialized on the turnover and after charging 62 yards Kordell Stewart ran 40 yards for the touchdown to make the score 7-0.
The Patriots held the Steelers to that score for the rest of the day, but they themselves were victims of great defensive play. Bledsoe hit Glenn on a 36 yard pass to push the ball to the Steelers 13-yard line. That was as close as the Patriots got to the Pittsburgh endzone and they had to settle for an Adam Vinatieri field goal to make the score 7-3 at the half.
In the fourth quarter the Patriots started to drive again, only this time they did not enter the redzone and Vinatieri hit a 46-yard field goal to bring the Patriots within one.
The Steelers started a drive of their own late in the quarter which ran Jerome Bettis inches away from the New England endzone. The play call on fourth down was a surprise call for Kordell Stewart to go over the top rather than kick a field goal. The Patriots defense, lead by Ted Johnson and Todd Collins, stopped him cold in his tracks.
Then the Patriots offense was shut down with Bledsoe's fumble and the score stood at 7-6 as the Patriots were knocked out of the playoffs.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Latest News

Presented by

Trending Video


In Case You Missed It

Presented by