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1998 Pittsburgh Steelers season

 

1998 Pittsburgh Steelers season

1998 Pittsburgh Steelers season
Head coach Bill Cowher
General manager Tom Donahoe
Owner The Rooney Family
Home field Three Rivers Stadium
Results
Record 7–9
Division place 3rd in AFC Central
Playoff finish did not qualify
Pro Bowlers C Dermontti Dawson
AP All-Pros Dermontti Dawson (1st team)
Team MVP Levon Kirkland
Team ROY Alan Faneca
Timeline
Previous season Next season
< 1997 1999 >

The 1998 season marked the first time since 1991 that the Steelers failed to reach the playoffs. Pittsburgh finished 7–9 after starting the season 5–2, losing their last five games to knock themselves out of the playoffs. It was Bill Cowher's first losing record as coach of the Steelers.

The season was marked by a controversial ending to the team's Thanksgiving Day game against the Detroit Lions, where Jerome Bettis claimed he called the coin toss in overtime as "tails" although referee Phil Luckett heard "heads." The Lions won 19–16 and started the Steelers' losing streak to finish the season.

The poor play of Kordell Stewart was cited as another problem, as the fans slowly began to turn on him. After their 11–5 1997 season, Pittsburgh lost two key offensive components: Chan Gailey, the offensive coordinator who went on to become head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, and their leading receiver, Yancey Thigpen, a Pro Bowler for Pittsburgh in 1997, who joined the Tennessee Oilers.

Contents

  • Personnel 1
    • Staff 1.1
    • Roster 1.2
  • Regular season 2
    • Schedule 2.1
    • Game summaries 2.2
      • Week 1 (Sunday September 6, 1998): at Baltimore Ravens 2.2.1
      • Week 2 (Sunday September 13, 1998): vs. Chicago Bears 2.2.2
      • Week 3 (Sunday September 20, 1998): at Miami Dolphins 2.2.3
      • Week 4 (Sunday September 27, 1998): vs. Seattle Seahawks 2.2.4
      • Week 5 (Sunday October 4, 1998): Bye Week 2.2.5
      • Week 6 (Sunday October 11, 1998): at Cincinnati Bengals 2.2.6
      • Week 7 (Sunday October 18, 1998): vs. Baltimore Ravens 2.2.7
      • Week 8 (Monday October 26, 1998): at Kansas City Chiefs 2.2.8
      • Week 9 (Sunday November 1, 1998): vs. Tennessee Oilers 2.2.9
      • Week 10 (Monday November 9, 1998): vs. Green Bay Packers 2.2.10
      • Week 11 (Sunday November 15, 1998): at Tennessee Oilers 2.2.11
      • Week 12 (Sunday November 22, 1998): vs. Jacksonville Jaguars 2.2.12
      • Week 13 (Thursday November 26, 1998): at Detroit Lions 2.2.13
      • Week 14 (Sunday December 6, 1998): vs. New England Patriots 2.2.14
      • Week 15 (Sunday December 13, 1998): at Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2.2.15
      • Week 16 (Sunday December 20, 1998): vs. Cincinnati Bengals 2.2.16
      • Week 17 (Monday December 28, 1998): at Jacksonville Jaguars 2.2.17
    • Standings 2.3
  • References 3

Personnel

Staff

Notable additions include Hines Ward, Alan Faneca and Deshea Townsend.

Roster

Regular season

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Location Time (ET) TV Result Record
1 Sun. Sep. 6 at Baltimore Ravens Ravens Stadium 1:00 pm CBS W 20–13 1–0
2 Sun. Sep. 13 Chicago Bears Three Rivers Stadium 1:00 pm FOX W 17–12 2–0
3 Sun. Sep. 20 at Miami Dolphins Pro Player Stadium 1:00 pm CBS L 21–0 2–1
4 Sun. Sep. 27 Seattle Seahawks Three Rivers Stadium 4:05 pm CBS W 13–10 3–1
5 Sun. Oct. 4 Bye
6 Sun. Oct. 11 at Cincinnati Bengals Cinergy Field 1:00 pm CBS L 25–20 3–2
7 Sun. Oct. 18 Baltimore Ravens Three Rivers Stadium 1:00 pm CBS W 16–6 4–2
8 Mon. Oct. 26 at Kansas City Chiefs Arrowhead Stadium 8:20 pm ABC W 20–13 5–2
9 Sun. Nov. 1 Tennessee Oilers Three Rivers Stadium 1:00 pm CBS L 41–31 5–3
10 Mon. Nov. 9 Green Bay Packers Three Rivers Stadium 8:20 pm ABC W 27–20 6–3
11 Sun. Nov. 15 at Tennessee Oilers Vanderbilt Stadium 1:00 pm CBS L 23–14 6–4
12 Sun. Nov. 22 Jacksonville Jaguars Three Rivers Stadium 1:00 pm CBS W 30–15 7–4
13 Thu. Nov. 26 at Detroit Lions Pontiac Silverdome 12:30 pm CBS L 19–16 OT 7–5
14 Sun. Dec. 6 New England Patriots Three Rivers Stadium 1:00 pm CBS L 23–9 7–6
15 Sun. Dec. 13 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Raymond James Stadium 1:00 pm CBS L 16–3 7–7
16 Sun. Dec. 20 Cincinnati Bengals Three Rivers Stadium 1:00 pm CBS L 25–24 7–8
17 Mon. Dec. 28 at Jacksonville Jaguars Alltel Stadium 8:20 pm ABC L 21–3 7–9

Game summaries

Week 1 (Sunday September 6, 1998): at Baltimore Ravens

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 3 0 10 7 20
Ravens 3 0 0 10 13

at Ravens Stadium, Baltimore, Maryland

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 27
  • Baltimore – FG Stover 41
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 49
  • Pittsburgh – Stewart 1 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 20 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Baltimore – FG Stover 25
  • Baltimore – J. Lewis 64 pass from Zeier (Stover kick)

Week 2 (Sunday September 13, 1998): vs. Chicago Bears

1 2 3 4 Total
Bears 0 9 0 3 12
Steelers 0 7 10 0 17

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EDT
  • Game weather: 84 °F (Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 59,084
  • Referee: Gerald Austin
  • TV announcers: (FOX) Kenny Albert (play by play), Tim Green (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Chicago – Engram 54 pass from Kramer (kick failed)
  • Pittsburgh – Bettis 1 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Chicago – FG Jaeger 19
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 49
  • Pittsburgh – Coleman 13 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Chicago – FG Jaeger 36

Week 3 (Sunday September 20, 1998): at Miami Dolphins

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 0 0 0 0 0
Dolphins 0 14 7 0 21

at Pro Player Stadium, Miami, Florida

Scoring Drives:

  • Miami – Abdul-Jabbar 3 run (Mare kick)
  • Miami – L. Thomas 8 pass from Marino (Mare kick)
  • Miami – Z. Thomas 17 interception return (Mare kick)

Week 4 (Sunday September 27, 1998): vs. Seattle Seahawks

1 2 3 4 Total
Seahawks 0 7 3 0 10
Steelers 3 7 3 0 13

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 4:05 pm EDT
  • Game weather: 83 °F (Partly Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 58,413
  • Referee: Johnny Grier
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Kevin Harlan (play by play), Sam Wyche (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 33
  • Seattle – Fauria 14 pass from Moon (Peterson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – Fuamatu-Ma'afala 10 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 25
  • Seattle – FG Peterson 47

Week 5 (Sunday October 4, 1998): Bye Week

Week 6 (Sunday October 11, 1998): at Cincinnati Bengals

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 0 10 7 3 20
Bengals 0 9 3 13 25

at Cinergy Field, Cincinnati, Ohio

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EDT
  • Game weather:
  • Game attendance: 59,979
  • Referee: Tom White
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Don Criqui (play by play), Beasley Reece (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 40
  • Pittsburgh – Bettis 13 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Cincinnati – FG Pelfrey 44
  • Cincinnati – Scott 44 pass from O'Donnell (pass failed)
  • Pittsburgh – Huntley 9 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Cincinnati – FG Pelfrey 48
  • Cincinnati – Scott 30 pass from O'Donnell (pass failed)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 40
  • Cincinnati – Pickens 25 pass from O'Donnell (Pelfrey kick)

Week 7 (Sunday October 18, 1998): vs. Baltimore Ravens

1 2 3 4 Total
Ravens 3 3 0 0 6
Steelers 3 0 7 6 16

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EDT
  • Game weather: 73 °F (Partly Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 58,620
  • Referee: Ron Blum
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Kevin Harlan (play by play), Sam Wyche (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 41
  • Baltimore – FG Stover 41
  • Baltimore – FG Stover 40
  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 55 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 42
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 40

Week 8 (Monday October 26, 1998): at Kansas City Chiefs

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 7 3 3 7 20
Chiefs 3 3 7 0 13

at Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – McAfee recovered blocked punt in end zone (N. Johnson kick)
  • Kansas City – FG Stoyanovich 20
  • Kansas City – FG Stoyanovich 28
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 34
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 22
  • Kansas City – Rison 2 pass from Grbac (Stoyanovich kick)
  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 5 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)

Week 9 (Sunday November 1, 1998): vs. Tennessee Oilers

1 2 3 4 Total
Oilers 3 14 10 14 41
Steelers 0 7 0 24 31

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 55 °F (Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 58,222
  • Referee: Mike Carey
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Ian Eagle (play by play), Mark May (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Tennessee – FG Del Greco 43
  • Tennessee – Wycheck 2 pass from McNair (Del Greco kick)
  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 9 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Tennessee – Dyon 6 pass from McNair (Del Greco kick)
  • Tennessee – FG Del Greco 32
  • Tennessee – George 37 run (Del Greco kick)
  • Tennessee – Davis 29 pass from McNair (Del Greco kick)
  • Pittsburgh – Hawkins 3 pass from Stewart (C. Johnson pass from Stewart)
  • Tennessee – Marts 27 interception return (Del Greco kick)
  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 37 pass from Tomczak (C. Johnson pass from Tomczak)
  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 2 pass from Tomczak (Blackwell pass from Tomczak)

Week 10 (Monday November 9, 1998): vs. Green Bay Packers

1 2 3 4 Total
Packers 0 0 3 17 20
Steelers 14 10 3 0 27

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – C. Johnson 8 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – Stewart 1 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 45
  • Pittsburgh – Fuamatu-Ma'afala 5 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 21
  • Green Bay – FG Longwell 42
  • Green Bay – McKenzie 88 fumble return (pass failed)
  • Green Bay – Harris 2 run (Freeman pass from Favre)
  • Green Bay – FG Longwell 37

Week 11 (Sunday November 15, 1998): at Tennessee Oilers

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 0 14 0 0 14
Oilers 3 10 0 10 23

at Vanderbilt Stadium, Nashville, Tennessee

Scoring Drives:

  • Tennessee – FG Del Greco 46
  • Pittsburgh – Bruener 10 pass from Stewart (George kick)
  • Tennessee – Davis 25 pass from McNair (Del Greco kick)
  • Pittsburgh – Fuamatu-Ma'afala 26 pass from Stewart (George kick)
  • Tennessee – FG Del Greco 24
  • Tennessee – FG Del Greco 22
  • Tennessee – Roan recovered fumble in end zone (Del Greco kick)

Week 12 (Sunday November 22, 1998): vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

1 2 3 4 Total
Jaguars 0 0 7 8 15
Steelers 7 6 3 14 30

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 47 °F (Mostly Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 59,124
  • Referee: Walt Coleman
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Kevin Harlan (play by play), Sam Wyche (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – Washington 52 interception return (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 38
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 29
  • Jacksonville – Taylor 2 run (Hollis kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 41
  • Pittsburgh – Bruener 9 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Jacksonville – J. Smith 33 pass from Brunell (McCardell pass from Brunell)
  • Pittsburgh – Washington 78 interception return (N. Johnson kick)

Week 13 (Thursday November 26, 1998): at Detroit Lions

1 2 3 4 OT Total
Steelers 0 6 7 3 0 16
Lions 0 3 3 10 3 19

at Pontiac Silverdome, Pontiac, Michigan

  • Game time: 12:30 pm EST
  • Game weather: Dome
  • Game attendance: 78,139
  • Referee: Phil Luckett
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Greg Gumbel (play by play), Phil Simms (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 30
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 38
  • Detroit – FG Hanson 45
  • Pittsburgh – Blackwell 24 pass from Stewart (N. Johnson kick)
  • Detroit – FG Hanson 52
  • Detroit – Moore 21 pass from Batch (Hanson kick)
  • Detroit – FG Hanson 35
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 25
  • Detroit – FG Hanson 42

Week 14 (Sunday December 6, 1998): vs. New England Patriots

1 2 3 4 Total
Patriots 3 10 0 10 23
Steelers 6 3 0 0 9

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 68 °F (Partly Sunny)
  • Game attendance: 58,632
  • Referee: Dick Hantak
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Verne Lundquist (play by play), Randy Cross (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • New England – FG Vinatieri 21
  • New England – FG Vinatieri 29
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 49
  • New England – Glenn 86 pass from Bledsoe (Vinatieri kick)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 26
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 43
  • New England – FG Vinatieri 35
  • New England – Edwards 4 run (Vinatieri kick)

Week 15 (Sunday December 13, 1998): at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 3 0 0 0 3
Buccaneers 3 3 7 3 16

at Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 27
  • Tampa Bay – FG Husted 39
  • Tampa Bay – FG Husted 37
  • Tampa Bay – Alstott 3 run (Husted kick)
  • Tampa Bay – FG Husted 21

Week 16 (Sunday December 20, 1998): vs. Cincinnati Bengals

1 2 3 4 Total
Bengals 3 13 6 3 25
Steelers 0 7 14 3 24

at Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • Game time: 1:00 pm EST
  • Game weather: 42 °F (Cloudy)
  • Game attendance: 52,017
  • Referee: Bernie Kukar
  • TV announcers: (CBS) Ian Eagle (play by play), Mark May (color commentator)

Scoring Drives:

  • Cincinnati – FG Pelfrey 33
  • Cincinnati – Shade 55 fumble return (Pelfrey kick)
  • Cincinnati – FG Pelfrey 37
  • Pittsburgh – Lake 15 interception return (N. Johnson kick)
  • Cincinnati – FG Pelfrey 43
  • Pittsburgh – Oldham 54 fumble return (N. Johnson kick)
  • Pittsburgh – Bettis 4 run (N. Johnson kick)
  • Cincinnati – Scott 61 pass from Blake (bad snap)
  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 22
  • Cincinnati – FG Pelfrey 21

Week 17 (Monday December 28, 1998): at Jacksonville Jaguars

1 2 3 4 Total
Steelers 0 3 0 0 3
Jaguars 0 14 7 0 21

at Alltel Stadium, Jacksonville, Florida

Scoring Drives:

  • Pittsburgh – FG N. Johnson 24
  • Jacksonville – Quinn 15 run (Hollis kick)
  • Jacksonville – Taylor 9 pass from Quinn (Hollis kick)
  • Jacksonville – Taylor 12 run (Hollis kick)

Standings

AFC Central
W L T PCT PF PA
Jacksonville Jaguars 11 5 0 .688 392 338
Tennessee Oilers 8 8 0 .500 330 320
Pittsburgh Steelers 7 9 0 .438 263 303
Baltimore Ravens 6 10 0 .375 269 335
Cincinnati Bengals 3 13 0 .188 268 452

[6]

References

  1. ^ 1998 Pittsburgh Steelers Media Guide. 
  2. ^ 1998 Pittsburgh Steelers Media Guide. 
  3. ^ 1999 Pittsburgh Steelers Media Guide. 
  4. ^ "http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/pit/1998_roster.htm". 
  5. ^ "http://www.pro-football-reference.com/teams/pit/1999_roster.htm". 
  6. ^ NFL 2001 Record and Fact Book, Workman Publishing Co, New York, NY, ISBN 0-7611-2480-2
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