It was a tough day for the Steelers this past Sunday as their playoff run came to end against the Denver Broncos, with a final score of 23-16. Mike Tomlin head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers says after the game, “we fought hard, just not enough and came up a few plays short, such is life.” Tomlin didn’t sound upset with his team, but proud.
The Steelers who have been plagued with injuries this season made due with what they had Sunday. Missing key starters was not an excuse Mike Tomlin was going to make. The Steelers running backs have been depleting through out this season due to injuries have kept the next man up mentality. Fourth string running back Fitzgerald Toussaint whose number was called last week against the Cincinnati Bengals saw the majority of the carries again on Sunday against the Broncos. Toussaint finished the day with 12 carriers for 39 yards and 1 touchdown. Toussaint played well but fumbled in a crucial time to give the momentum and ball to the Broncos in the fourth quarter with the Steelers up a small lead of 13-12.
Toussaint said after the game “I’ve got to protect the ball, there’s no excuse for that, that’s on me.” A sadden Toussaint who reported to have his head in his locker after the game feeling accountable for the loss was consoled by coach Tomlin and defended by quarterback Ben Roethlisberger who said “we wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him, this is not all on him by any means. It’s on all of us.”
The Steelers seem optimistic for next season, as 4 key injured player’s return. The Denver Broncos will now go on to face the defending Super Bowl champions, The New England Patriots in the AFC championship game.