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Chargers vs. Steelers: Mike Tomlin explains why he didn't go for 2-point conversions

Mike Tomlin's choice to have the Pittsburgh Steelers kick extra points down late against San Diego instead of going for two-point conversions when game strategy clearly called for the latter caused some to question the coaches' decision-making.

Joe Sargent

A successful two-point conversion could've cut the Pittsburgh Steelers' 24-point deficit to two possessions, but Mike Tomlin made the strange decision to bring out the kicking unit for a pair of extra points against the San Diego Chargers. The move didn't come back to haunt his team, as they lost by ten, but Tomlin's choice raised some eyebrows.

In a post-game press conference, Tomlin said that the game was too far out of reach, and that his decision wouldn't have made a difference in the end. He opted to keep his two-point plays off of other future opponents' radars instead of playing for the a potential shot at tying the game:

"Until we stopped them, it was going to be insignificant," said Tomlin. "I was holding the two-point plays for that reason and that reason only. Now, we still have them in our hip pocket. Those specialty plays we didn't want to put on tape unless we had an opportunity to close the gap. As you can see, we didn't."

There were over 17 minutes remaining in the game when Mike Wallace scored on a 40-yard pass from Ben Roethlisberger. It turned out that Tomlin was right, as the fact that San Diego scored a touchdown later put the game out of reach. But Roethlisberger did throw two additional touchdowns after the pass to Wallace. If each of those had been accompanied by a two-point conversion and Pittsburgh had held San Diego, the game would have been tied, whereas Tomlin only left his team in a situation to trail by a few points.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.