The Steelers tried a bit of trickery on an apparent field goal attempt against the Seahawks. The Seahawks did not buy it for a second, and easily intercepted a pass from backup QB Landry Jones:
The Steelers came out in a field goal formation on fourth-and-2 at the opposing 27-yard line. Except instead of their regular holder, punter Jordan Berry, it's backup QB, Landry Jones. They audible into a formation that looks kind of like a punt, with Jones over 10 yards deep and kicker Chris Boswell set up as a personal protector.
But when it's snapped, Jones rolls right and then throws left to offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva, who had sprinted all the way from the right side of the formation. It's picked by Jeremy Lane, who probably could've run all the way to the end zone, but he trips over himself for a mere 54-yard return that set up an easy Seahawks TD. Jones isn't the punter, but his throw kinda looked like a punter's throw, holding up in the air for plenty of time and allowing Lane to get under it.
I think the Steelers hoped the Seahawks would think Jones -- who is the same height, build, skin tone, and hair color as Berry, and is only one uniform number apart -- was the regular holder/punter. They hoped their opponent would think this was really a field goal, and really a punt. But they never bought it.
The biggest problem with this trick play here is that absolutely no part of it successfully fools the Seahawks at all. The Steelers ditch field goal formation, begin lining up as if they're going to pass it or maybe punt, and the Seahawks calmly move into a pretty normal defensive formation. There's no scrambling or hesitation: They're just ready to defend.
If you let the opponent know before the snap that you're running a trick play and they don't appear confused, you're not running a trick play. You're just running a bad offensive play. This is just a regular throwback pass, except the Steelers don't have their best players in. Instead of Ben Roethlisberger at QB, it's the backup, who is worse at passing. The Seahawks didn't have to worry about the run up the middle, because the only running option was a kicker.
And instead of a regular wide receiver or a tight end, the man going out for a pass is an offensive lineman. They sent the right tackle from the right side of the formation all the way to the left, and hoped nobody would notice him. Alas, somebody on the Seattle defense noticed the 6'9, 320-pound offensive lineman slowly sprinting across the field.
The Steelers only needed to pick up two yards. They probably would've been better off trying to do that with their regular offense.
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