Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jerome ‘The Bus’ Bettis played ten of his thirteen seasons with the black and gold. Bettis’ distinguished career culminated with a victory over the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XL at Ford Field in Detroit. Seven years after The Bus logged its last mile, there was another bus which was making headlines in the Steelers’ organization.
In a matter of a few hours, the Steelers went from Pittsburgh to Newark and onto their team bus, which took them to MetLife Stadium for their game against the New York Giants. As a result of Hurricane Sandy, the hotel in which the Steelers were supposed to shack up in the day before had lost electrical power. In order not to burden an already stressful situation in the NY/NJ metropolitan area, the Steelers decided to make a day trip out of it. Judging by the results, they should make these trips more often.
What was even more impressive in the Steelers’ 24-20 victory was how they stepped on the gas in the fourth quarter to come from behind and pull out their third consecutive victory. One would figure that a team which had been traveling during the earlier part of the day would be tired and flat by the latter stages of the game. If anything, they appeared more energetic as the game wore on.
The Giants wanted to win this one badly for their hometown faithful, who had been through so much devastation during the past week. While it will take a while for things to get back to normal in the NY/NJ area, any little bit of morale boost helps in times like these. Unfortunately for the Giants and their fans, wanting to win a game and actually winning it are nowhere near the same thing in the NFL.
Hurricane Sandy has left many people with the need to overcome many obstacles to rebuild their lives. For the Steelers to defeat the Giants, they had their share of adversity to overcome. Pittsburgh played an uncharacteristically mistake prone first three quarters, which were marred by turnovers and sacks. There were also two contentious calls by the officials which went against the Steelers. For a while there, it appeared the regular NFL referees had taken a week off and the replacements had once again been summoned to work the game.
Ironically, the win by Pittsburgh was exactly the type of victory the Giants needed to boost the spirits of the weather beaten hometown fans. Sadly, it was not to be. The week would prove to the Giants and their followers that fate is indeed a cruel mistress.
After the game, the Steelers loaded up the bus and began their journey back home to celebrate. It would be a long, satisfying and emotional one day excursion they will not soon forget, during a trying week the entire NY/NJ area would like nothing more than to forget.