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Steelers Finish Season With Dramatic Overtime Win Over Browns

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Pittsburgh Steelers get dramatic win with sudden death touchdown on final play of the 2016 regular season.

The Pittsburgh Steelers didn’t have much to play for in Week 17 against the Cleveland Browns, but still found a way to get a dramatic overtime win. The Steelers were locked in as the third seed in the AFC Playoffs, so they benched a handful of offensive starters, assuring they would be healthy for their first round matchup. The home crowd got quite a show, even without having the big names leading the way to their 27-24 overtime win.

With Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell, Antonio Brown, and Maurkice Pouncey all listed as healthy scratches, it opened the door for some of the Steelers backups to get some reps and prove their worth. Landry Jones, more than anyone else on the roster, needed the start to not only get some in-game snaps, but also some confidence heading into the playoffs in case his name gets called. He played the best game as a starter in his career going 24/37 for 277 yards, three touchdowns, leading to a 103.1 NFL QB Rating. Mike Tomlin commented after the game about the performance of Landry Jones and the offense.

“That guy works hard. All of these guys work hard and respect them, and we respect their abilities to be positive contributors to our efforts. And for him to have an opportunity to rise up for his teammates, I’m sure he was prepared for it, he relished in it and delivered. It’s a good thing. It’s a good thing for him. It’s a good thing for us.”

With the Browns continuing to shoot themselves in the foot, they left the door open for the Steelers to win the game. In a tie game with less than a minute left, the Browns had the ball inside the Steelers 10-yard line and just simply had to hold on to kick the winning field goal. Yet, as these things always seem to happen to the Browns, Isaiah Crowell fumbled the ball away to Mike Mitchell. Then in overtime, the Browns went down inside the Steelers 5-yard line, and proceeded to go backwards on three consecutive plays to set themselves up for a field goal.

The Steelers offense used all of the opportunities the Browns gave them, and found a way to get a dramatic last-play win. Landry Jones drove the Steelers offense 75 yards and capped it off with a sudden death touchdown pass to receiver Cobi Hamilton. Cobi Hamilton used this game as a chance to prove to himself and to his coaches that he deserves a spot on the depth chart heading into the playoffs. According to Pro Football Focus, he was the highest graded offensive player for the Steelers on Sunday with 81.5. Cobi Hamilton commented after the game on the game-winning play.

“[It was] just a go-ball. We do it every day in practice. It wasn’t anything special. It was a good ball by [Landry] Jones. It starts there. Like I said, it was a good ball by [Landry] Jones, and I was able to finish it.”

Although the game had no impact in the seeding for the Steelers, they still used the game as a chance to head into the playoffs hot. The momentum from the win will carry over into the first round matchup at home against the Miami Dolphins, which may have a dramatic finish of it’s own.

All statistics and quotes referenced via Pittsburgh Steelers Media Guide and Pro Football Focus.