Seemingly everyone has given their input on what went wrong (or right, depending on who the source is) in the Pittsburgh Steelers’ final drive against the New England Patriots that led to a game-losing interception.
And now, Steelers offensive coordinator Todd Haley has given his analysis of what went wrong.
The biggest gripe for Haley appears not to be just the Jesse James overruled touchdown grab, but the play that came immediately after.
Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger hit receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey with a pass to the left, and the 30-year-old reached the seven-yard line but was unable to get out of bounds before being brought down by Malcolm Butler. With the clock running and the Steelers out of timeouts, Roethlisberger ran the fake spike on the next play that led to Duron Harmon’s interception.
Here was Haley’s take.
“Yeah, have the first touchdown be a touchdown, No. 1,” Haley said on Thursday, referring to the James incompletion when asked what he would have changed about the final drive, via ESPN.
“I know (head coach Mike Tomlin) has talked about this a bunch, but the only thing I’ll say is that’s what we call an incomplete or out-of-bounds situation after the ball was ruled an incompletion. We don’t want the ball in the field of play there without a timeout. I’m never going to question Ben’s decision of thinking Hey-Bey could get out of bounds, but as far as scenarios, we’re in an incomplete or out-of-bounds situation.
“The clock will not be running if things go the way they’re supposed to go. Then you’re getting the guys on the field for each particular play you wanted on the field and you’re counting on having three shots at the end zone.”
It likely will be a while until Pittsburgh really can shake off questions about the nasty loss, especially if they end up playing the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game and have to compete on the road.
In any event, pretty much every necessary perspective now has been accounted for on what went wrong in that stretch for the Steelers.
Thumbnail photo via Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports Images.
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