PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) – The fan frenzy across Pittsburgh started early Sunday and culminated in an AFC Championship for the Steelers.
Now, the Steelers are bound for Dallas after defeating the Jets 24-19 Sunday night. They’ll face the Green Bay Packers, who beat the Chicago Bears to take the NFC crown.
Fans furiously twirled their Terrible Towels in the chilly Heinz Field stands to create a blurry sea of black and yellow after their team beat the New York Jets to win the AFC title.
The Steelers are headed back to the Super Bowl for the third time in six years, but the celebration didn’t come without some tense moments.
The game was an emotional roller coaster from beginning to end for the more than 66,000 black and gold faithful inside the stadium and the millions of others watching from bars and at home.
“We’re gonna get this kick off, take it down, defense is going to stand tall,” said one fan at the outset of the game. “J-E-T-S – ‘Just Ending Their Season.’”
The confidence of Steelers Nation was nothing but bolstered as the black and gold took the ball and used most of the first quarter to go down field and score.
“The offense definitely set the tone for the game and we had to pound it in there to show them how we play Steeler football,” said another fan.
Then, suddenly, it was halftime with a commanding lead.
“A lot of time left, the Jets are a good club, but the Steelers are going to stay in there and fight back,” said one fan.
“We’re definitely going to beat them. Our defense is outstanding,” added another. “Everybody pitched in to help. It’s wonderful.”
But the Jets would not go away quietly and you could read the concern on the faces of the fans.
Ultimately, it came down to third-and-everything and Ben Roethlisberger delivered with a pass to Antonio Brown to seal the win.
“Pittsburgh’s going to the Super Bowl,” said one fan in celebration.
“It’s awesome; Steelers are going to Dallas,” added another fan after the game.
The Steelers will be looking for their seventh Super Bowl title and will face the Packers on Feb. 6 in Dallas.