Plays that shaped Steelers' season: No. 10

January, 6, 2014
Jan 6
5:15
PM ET
PITTSBURGH -- In a league that promotes parity, indeed thrives on it, the difference between 8-8 and 10-6 -- or 6-10 -- may only be a handful of plays. Over the next two weeks (Monday through Friday) I will take a closer look at 10 plays that shaped the Pittsburgh Steelers’ season.

For better and for worse.

No. 10

The play: Le'Veon Bell’s 25-yard run in the third quarter against the Green Bay Packers.

The situation: Bell, running mad after losing a fumble that led to a Packers touchdown, flashed through the middle of the line and punctuated his longest run of a productive afternoon by hurdling Packers safety Morgan Burnett. Bell’s run set the tone for a drive that quarterback Ben Roethlisberger capped with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Matt Spaeth. The score gave the Steelers a 24-21 lead and they never trailed again on the way to a 38-31 win at snowy Lambeau Field.

Why it mattered: Steelers coach Mike Tomlin had enough faith in Bell after his costly fumble to go right back to the rookie running back during a critical juncture of the game. That trust and the resulting run helped propel Bell to his first career 100-yard game and showed why the Steelers are so high on the former Michigan State star -- and why he will be a focal point of the offense in the coming seasons.

Scott Brown

ESPN Pittsburgh Steelers reporter

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