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Jets vs. Steelers: What Was the Most Important Play of the Game?

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NFL: New York Jets at Pittsburgh Steelers Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

What was the most important play of Sunday’s loss to the Steelers?

What does Pro Football Reference's win probability think?

Pro Football Reference has a win probability formula that estimates a team's chances of winning based on factors like score, time, and down. Which play swung the game the most in the Steelers' favor Sunday by that formula?

They say the biggest play happened early in the game. The pick is Sammie Coates’ 72 yard touchdown on Pittsburgh’s first offensive series. It took Pittsburgh’s chances from 68.1% to 82.8%. an increase of 14.7%

What do I think?

This is tough because Sunday’s game really did not swing on one play. You can’t really say it was Todd Bowles’ decisions to punt in the fourth quarter rather than go for it on a pair of fourth downs. The odds were already stacked against the Jets at that point. The team was down two scores in the fourth quarter. Pittsburgh’s odds of winning were already over 98% in both instances.

I guess I would go with Roethlisberger’s second touchdown pass, the 1 yarder to Jesse James right before halftime. It eliminated any momentum the Jets gained from their own go-ahead touchdown drive preceding this Pittsburgh score. It also cost the team a chance to take the lead into the locker room. That score gave Pittsburgh the lead for good.

What do you think?