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2002 Pittsburgh Steelers season

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2002 Pittsburgh Steelers season

2002 Pittsburgh Steelers season
Head coach Bill Cowher
General manager Kevin Colbert
Owner The Rooney Family
Home field Heinz Field
Results
Record 10–5–1
Division place 1st in AFC North
Playoff finish Won Wild Card Playoffs (Browns) 36–33
Lost Divisional Playoffs (Titans) 34–31
Pro Bowlers
AP All-Pros
Team MVP Joey Porter
Hines Ward
Team ROY Kendall Simmons
Timeline
Previous season Next season
< 2001 2003 >

The 2002 Pittsburgh Steelers season had the team coming off a 13–3 record and making an appearance in the AFC Championship Game. The team fell off slightly to a 10–5–1 record, although it was still good enough for a division championship. With their finish the Steelers became the first champions of the newly created AFC North. Bill Cowher's team won the Wild Card Game, defeating the Cleveland Browns at home, but lost to AFC South champion Tennessee in the divisional round.

Week 4 saw Kordell Stewart's final game as the Steelers' starting quarterback, as he was replaced by Tommy Maddox during the game and did not start again as he was released following the season.

Personnel

Staff

Notable additions include James Harrison, Brett Keisel, Larry Foote and Antwaan Randle El.

Roster

Preseason

Schedule

Week Date Time (ET) TV Opponent Result Record Game Site NFL Recap
1 Thu. Aug. 8 8:00 p.m. ESPN New York Jets L 16–6 0–1 Heinz Field
2 Sun. Aug. 18 8:00 p.m. KDKA at Washington Redskins L 35–34 0–2 FedEx Field
3 Sat. Aug. 24 12:30 p.m. KDKA at Detroit Lions W 34–22 1–2 Ford Field
4 Thu. Aug. 29 7:30 p.m. KDKA Minnesota Vikings W 17–14 2–2 Heinz Field

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Time (ET) TV Game Site Result Record NFL Recap
1 Mon. Sep. 9 at New England Patriots 9:00 p.m. ABC Gillette Stadium L 30–14 0–1 Summary
2 Sun. Sep. 15 Oakland Raiders 8:30 p.m. ESPN Heinz Field L 30–17 0–2 Summary
3 Sun. Sep. 22 Bye week
4 Sun. Sep. 29 Cleveland Browns 1:00 p.m. CBS Heinz Field W 16–13 (OT) 1–2 Summary
5 Sun. Oct. 6 at New Orleans Saints 1:00 p.m. CBS Louisiana Superdome L 32–29 1–3 Summary
6 Sun. Oct. 13 at Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 p.m. CBS Paul Brown Stadium W 34–7 2–3 Summary
7 Mon. Oct. 21 Indianapolis Colts 9:00 p.m. ABC Heinz Field W 28–10 3–3 Summary
8 Sun. Oct. 27 at Baltimore Ravens 1:00 p.m. CBS PSINet Stadium W 31–18 4–3 Summary
9 Sun. Nov. 3 at Cleveland Browns 1:00 p.m. CBS Cleveland Browns Stadium W 23–20 5–3 Summary
10 Sun. Nov. 10 Atlanta Falcons 1:00 p.m. FOX Heinz Field T 34–34 (OT) 5–3–1 Summary
11 Sun. Nov. 17 at Tennessee Titans 1:00 p.m. CBS Adelphia Coliseum L 31–23 5–4–1 Summary
12 Sun. Nov. 24 Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 p.m. CBS Heinz Field W 29–21 6–4–1 Summary
13 Sun. Dec. 1 at Jacksonville Jaguars 1:00 p.m. CBS Alltel Stadium W 25–23 7–4–1 Summary
14 Sun. Dec. 8 Houston Texans 1:00 p.m. CBS Heinz Field L 24–6 7–5–1 Summary
15 Sun. Dec. 15 Carolina Panthers 1:00 p.m. FOX Heinz Field W 30–14 8–5–1 Summary
16 Mon. Dec. 23 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 9:00 p.m. ABC Raymond James Stadium W 17–7 9–5–1 Summary
17 Sun. Dec. 29 Baltimore Ravens 1:00 p.m. CBS Heinz Field W 34–31 10–5–1 Summary

Game summaries

Week 1 (Monday September 9, 2002): at New England Patriots

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 7 0 0 7 14
Patriots 7 3 17 3 30

at Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts

With the loss, the Steelers began their season 0–1.

Week 2 (Sunday September 15, 2002): vs. Oakland Raiders

1 2 3 4 Total
Raiders 10 7 3 10 30
Steelers 7 3 7 0 17

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

With the loss, the Steelers went 0-2 heading into their bye week.

Week 4 (Sunday September 29, 2002): vs. Cleveland Browns

1 2 3 4 OT Total
Browns 3 3 0 7 0 13
Steelers 0 6 0 7 3 16

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EDT
  • Game weather: 71°F (Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 62,864
  • Referee: Bernie Kukar
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Gus Johnson (play by play), Brent Jones (color commentator)

Kordell Stewart began the game, going 15–25 for 143 yards, but was intercepted by Robert Griffith of the Browns. At this point his Pittsburgh career all but ended when he was benched and replaced by backup Tommy Maddox, who hadn't thrown a pass in the NFL since 1995 with the Giants but had resurrected his career with stints with the New Jersey Red Dogs in the Arena Football League and a championship season in the ill-fated XFL. With the Steelers down 13–6, Maddox found Plaxico Burress for the tying touchdown just before the two-minute warning. The game went to overtime, but Maddox was picked off on his first throw of the extra quarter. The Browns, however, gagged when Phil Dawson missed a 45-yard field goal try. With new life the Steelers led by Maddox marched in range for Todd Peterson's 31-yarder and the 16–13 final.

Week 5 (Sunday October 6, 2002): at New Orleans Saints

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 0 14 7 8 29
Saints 10 9 10 3 32

at Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana

Week 6 (Sunday October 13, 2002): at Cincinnati Bengals

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 7 17 7 3 34
Bengals 0 0 7 0 7

at Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, Ohio

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EDT
  • Game weather:
  • Game attendance: 63,900
  • Referee: Ron Winter
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Kevin Harlan (play by play), Randy Cross (color commentator)

Week 7 (Monday October 21, 2002): vs. Indianapolis Colts

1 2 3 4 Total
Colts 0 3 7 0 10
Steelers 14 7 7 0 28

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Week 8 (Sunday October 27, 2002): at Baltimore Ravens

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 14 14 3 0 31
Ravens 0 3 8 7 18

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Week 9 (Sunday November 3, 2002): at Cleveland Browns

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 3 14 0 6 23
Browns 7 7 0 6 20

at Cleveland Browns Stadium, Cleveland, Ohio

Week 10 (Sunday November 10, 2002): vs. Atlanta Falcons

1 2 3 4 OT Total
Falcons 0 7 10 17 0 34
Steelers 3 14 14 3 0 34

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 66°F (Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 62,779
  • Referee: Terry McAulay
  • TV announcers: (FOX) Sam Rosen (play by play), Bill Maas (color commentator)

In the first NFL tie since 1997, Tommy Maddox erupted with 473 passing yards (a club record that stood until Ben Roethlisberger broke it in 2009) and connected on four touchdown throws in his first matchup against the coach who drafted him in Denver, Dan Reeves. Reeves' Falcons, however, were surging behind the running of sophomore quarterback Michael Vick. A 34–17 Steelers lead in the fourth could not be held as Warrick Dunn and Vick rushed the Falcons in range for a one-yard Bob Christian rushing touchdown, a Jay Feely field goal, and finally the tying Vick rushing score with 32 seconds remaining in regulation. In overtime the Steelers drove to range of a 48-yard field goal try by Todd Peterson, this after he'd missed a 40-yarder in regulation. The Falcons' Brian Finneran had caught six passes for 72 yards, but in his career debut on special teams he pulled off the play of the game by blocking the kick. Late in the extra quarter Maddox was picked off by Kevin Mathis, but the subsequent 56-yad Feely try was blocked, with one second left on the clock. Maddox launched a desperation heave and Burress caught it, but was ruled down at the one-foot line with the game declared over.

Week 11 (Sunday November 17, 2002): at Tennessee Titans

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 7 0 0 16 23
Titans 7 7 14 3 31

at Adelphia Coliseum, Nashville, Tennessee

Maddox's career nearly ended in tragedy as he threw a pass that Eddie George accounted for 103 of them) won 31–23.

Week 12 (Sunday November 24, 2002): vs. Cincinnati Bengals

1 2 3 4 Total
Bengals 0 14 0 7 21
Steelers 14 3 3 9 29

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 48°F (Partly Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 60,473
  • Referee: Ed Hochuli
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Craig Bolerjack (play by play), Craig James (color commentator)

Week 13 (Sunday December 1, 2002): at Jacksonville Jaguars

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 6 10 3 6 25
Jaguars 7 3 0 13 23

at Alltel Stadium, Jacksonville, Florida

Week 14 (Sunday December 8, 2002): vs. Houston Texans

1 2 3 4 Total
Texans 14 0 0 10 24
Steelers 0 3 3 0 6

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 35°F (Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 58,551
  • Referee: Bob McElwee
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Ian Eagle (play by play), Solomon Wilcots (color commentator)

Week 15 (Sunday December 15, 2002): vs. Carolina Panthers

1 2 3 4 Total
Panthers 7 0 0 7 14
Steelers 7 6 7 16 36

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 40°F (Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 58,586
  • Referee: Dick Hantak
  • TV announcers: (FOX) Sam Rosen (play by play), Bill Maas (color commentator)

Week 16 (Monday December 23, 2002): at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 17 0 0 0 17
Buccaneers 0 0 0 7 7

at Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida

Week 17 (Sunday December 29, 2002): vs. Baltimore Ravens

1 2 3 4 Total
Ravens 7 7 10 7 31
Steelers 7 13 0 14 34

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 32°F (Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 61,961
  • Referee: Ron Winter
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Kevin Harlan (play by play), Randy Cross (color commentator)

Playoffs

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Time (ET) TV Game Site Result Record NFL Recap
Wild Card Sun. Jan. 5 Cleveland Browns 1:00 p.m. CBS Heinz Field W 36–33 1–0 Summary
Divisional Sat. Jan. 11 at Tennessee Titans 4:30 p.m. CBS Adelphia Coliseum L 34–31 (OT) 1–1 Summary

Game summaries

AFC Wild Card Playoff (Sunday, January 5, 2003): vs. Cleveland Browns

1 2 3 4 Total
Browns 7 10 7 9 33
Steelers 0 7 7 22 36

at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 27°F (Light Snow)
  • Game attendance: 62,595
  • Referee: Bill Carollo
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Greg Gumbel (play by play), Phil Simms (color commentator)

AFC Divisional Playoff (Saturday, January 11, 2003): at Tennessee Titans

1 2 3 4 OT Total
Steelers 0 13 7 11 0 31
Titans 14 0 14 3 3 34

at Adelphia Coliseum, Nashville, Tennessee

  • Game time: 4:30 pm EST
  • Game weather: 34°F (Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 68,809
  • Referee: Ron Blum
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Dick Enberg (play by play), Dan Dierdorf (color commentator)

Standings

AFC North
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
(3) Pittsburgh Steelers 10 5 1 .656 6–0 8–4 390 345 W3
(6) Cleveland Browns 9 7 0 .563 3–3 7–5 344 320 W2
Baltimore Ravens 7 9 0 .438 3–3 7–5 316 354 L2
Cincinnati Bengals 2 14 0 .125 0–6 1–11 279 456 L1

Honors and awards

Pro Bowl representatives

See: 2003 Pro Bowl

References

  1. ^ a b
  2. ^
  3. ^
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