Tuesday, December 7, 2010
AFC North Week 13 decisive moment
By James Walker
» NFC Decisive Moments: East | West | North | South » AFC: East | West | North | South
The decisive moment for Week 13 may end up as the biggest decisive moment in the AFC North this season.
Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu forced a crucial fourth-quarter fumble against Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco that led to Pittsburgh's game-winning touchdown in a 13-10 victory. It was the biggest play in the biggest game in the division, where the Steelers (9-3) took control of the AFC North with four games to go.
Pittsburgh called a Cover Zero blitz with Polamalu coming off the edge. He timed the snap count perfectly and got to Flacco unimpeded to force the turnover. Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley recovered the ball, rumbled 19 yards, and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw the final touchdown three plays later.
Barring a late collapse by Pittsburgh, Polamalu's play could be the difference in the Steelers securing a first-round bye and at least one home playoff game at Heinz Field. He is a special player who is always ready to step up in the big moments.