Afternoon In Pittsburgh by Alan Segel

I have covered this team for 44 years and before that I was a season ticket holder for seven years. I have seen many events during this time; some were good and some not so good. I could point to several things that stand out. There was the year (1974) the Pats started 5 -0, lost to Buffalo and then went to Minnesota and beat the Vikings. But tight end Bob Windsor was hurt in that game and they finished just 7-7. Mini Mack Herron provided many a highlight. The 1976 season was a highlight with an 11-3 record and a playoff berth. The team frankly should have gone to the Super Bowl. However, I give you the name of Ben Dreith (enough said).I remember Mike Haynes in that season taking a punt back 89 and then 62 yards for scores. They were the first ever punt returns for touchdowns in Patriots history.
There are so many things to choose from but I have narrowed it down to two in terms of my favorite; Super Bowl 36 and the AFC Championship in Pittsburgh leading to that great Sunday in New Orleans. I have picked the AFC Championship game.
I covered the game for WBZ and went into Pittsburgh on Wednesday. My assignment was to get the flavor from the fans, and they were so dismissive. They did not even think for a second the Pats could win. In that game, Troy Brown returned a punt for a touchdown; Drew Bledsoe replaced the injured Tom Brady and threw a TD pass; and a blocked field goal that was returned for a touchdown provided the scores. The Pats built a 21-3 lead and then held on. The defense held the Steelers in check and they picked off three Kordell Stewart passes. The pure joy in the locker room from every player (especially Drew Bledsoe) is something I had never seen with this franchise. It created an indelible memory and it is something I will never forget.
There have been so many moments as I mentioned but that afternoon in Pittsburgh with all it meant provided my favorite Patriots Moment.

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