On Monday May 25th ESPN will re-broadcast the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2015 Monday Night Football game against the San Diego Chargers.
The matchup took place on October 12, 2015, at Qualcomm Stadium, and was won by the Steelers, 24-20.
The game came to a thrilling conclusion when Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin went for the win in lieu of a game-tying field attempt. With five seconds to go, Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell took a shotgun snap from center and managed—in his own inimitable way—to just barely break the plane of the goal line before his knee was down, allowing Pittsburgh to escape San Diego with a tension-filled ‘walk-off’ victory.
No doubt Tomlin really wanted to avoid going to overtime, in part because the Steelers were fighting an uphill battle that evening, as a result of the decidedly unfavorable quarterback matchup. (It’s likely Tomlin also wanted to avoid playing into overtime on a Monday night on the west coast.)
Michael Vick was the Steelers’ Starting QB
Michael Vick got the start in this game, subbing for an injured Ben Roethlisberger. Vick was outplayed by Chargers QB Philip Rivers, but he did manage a handful of key plays, most notably a 72-yard touchdown pass to Markus Wheaton in the middle of the fourth quarter, which tied the game at 17-17.
Vick went 13-26 for 203 yards on the night, with 1 TD and 1 INT, and also carried the ball once for 24 yards.
Chris Boswell’s Debut with the Pittsburgh Steelers
Yet the game is most notable, perhaps, for being placekicker Chris Boswell’s debut with the Steelers. Boswell had signed with the Steelers nine days earlier, in the wake of injuries to Shaun Suisham and Garrett Hartley and the release of Josh Scobee, the latter best remembered for the 11 seasons he spent with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Suisham had suffered what was later described as a “catastrophic” knee injury during that season’s Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio, one that ultimately forced him into retirement.
Fortunately for the Steelers, Boswell was successful from the get-go. He converted a 47-yard field goal with 4:24 left in the first half and the ‘Wizard of Boz’ was born.
Boswell would go on to make 29 of 32 field goals that season, perfect from all distances except between 40 and 49 yards, where he was 9 of 12.
The Steeler-Chargers tilt will be the fourth of five games in ESPN’s ‘Monday Night Football Classics’ series, which concludes on June 1 with the re-broadcast of a November 2019 clash between the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers.
It follows on the heels of the Super Bowl XIV ‘Game Rewind’, a re-broadcast of the Steelers’ fourth Super Bowl victory, one that features special interviews with Hall of Famers John Stallworth and Donnie Shell. If you recall, Stallworth caught a 73-yard touchdown pass from Terry Bradshaw in the fourth quarter that gave Pittsburgh a 24-19 lead en route to its 31-19 win.
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