With the Seahawks facing off against the Patriots in the Super Bowl on Sunday, I can’t help but think about the Pittsburgh Steelers Super Bowl XL win over the Seattle Seahawks nearly a decade ago. I think about that season, and I recall some of the most incredible moments in Steelers history; all of the ups and downs and some of the moments that made fans so shocked that they nearly had a heart attack.
Well, for Steelers fan Terry O’Neil, that is actually what happened.
Perhaps no one remembers the moment when Jerome Bettis fumbled the ball at the goal line with under two minutes to play and the ensuing recovery by Nick Harper of the Colts better than O’Neil. What some consider to be one the most shocking plays in NFL History nearly cost this man his life.
After Jerome Bettis fumbled the ball, O’Neil said he “wasn’t upset that the Steelers might lose,” he said. “I was upset because I didn’t want to see him end his career like that. A guy like that deserves better. I guess it was a little too much for me to handle.”
Now, nine years after this incredible play that left this man literally on the edge of death, fans still continue to cheer on the Steelers in a way that is unprecedented in the sports realm. We have to wait for next season to watch the Steelers make another run at a seventh Lombardi Trophy, but don’t let that turn you away from watching Sunday’s big game.
Just be careful.
I – hopefully along with many other Steelers fans – will be rooting vehemently for the Seattle Seahawks to hand New England another Super Bowl loss, but let’s not get so caught up in the insanity that we have a heart attack. Let O’Neil’s story remind us why we love football, but at the same time, let it remind us to keep everything in perspective on Sunday Night.