The Pittsburgh Steelers have no reason to tank after trading for Minkah Fitzpatrick but they almost gave away a win to the Indianapolis Colts. After two failed pass interference challenges, the Colts had a prime opportunity to get the winning field goal but the usually reliable Adam Vinatieri missed a 43 yarder to bail out the Steelers.

It was a close game throughout. Nobody led by more than a touchdown and the game had its own twists and turns. A Steelers pick-six, a Colts safety, and a missed two point conversion helped make this game a 26-24 Steelers lead entering the homestretch. And then things completely turned on its head.

On 3rd and 10, Brian Hoyer stepped back and launched a long bomb toward Zach Pascal. Steven Nelson tangled into Pascal but it very much looked like Pascal wasn’t getting to the end of that pass. That apparently wasn’t the case to the referees who threw the flag on Nelson for pass interference and got a 35 yard penalty.

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin decided to challenge the call, which wouldn’t be a bad move if referees actually overturned pass interference calls. They don’t, because it’s a judgment call, even in obvious missed calls such as this, and the Steelers unsurprisingly lost the challenge. The second challenge just two plays later, for a potential push off by Pascal on Nelson, was also not overturned.

This put the Colts in field goal range and the team went somewhat conservative. After three straight running plays, the Steelers took their final timeout on fourth down. Up came Adam Vinatieri to send the Colts to another victory but he shanked the kick, giving the Steelers a 26-24 win.

The win puts the Steelers at 4-4 and somehow will be within a game if the Ravens lose to the Patriots later tonight. In an uncompetitive AFC North, 4-4 is looking good. The Colts still sit in a decent spot at 5-3 but fears on a potential knee injury to Jacoby Brissett might sink their playoff hopes.

About Phillip Bupp

News and soccer editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. I also do video highlight game coverage for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

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