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Stevie Johnson Article by Tim Graham


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https://theathletic.com/2194262/2020/11/27/stevie-johnson-bills-dropped-touchdown/

 

I highly recommend this.

 

'For nine years in the back of my closet, it remained in a UPS box, tape intact and seal unbroken.

At best, I’ve been confused about what to do with the contents. That’s when I can reconcile being in possession of this stuff at all.

Part of me feels guilty, evidenced by three address labels. I bought it, signed for it, felt silly and sent the box back, reconsidered and reversed shipment back to my house.

Something indescribable compelled me to save it, but not enough to look at it.

Inside is the representation of another man’s agony, albeit an existential crisis that eventually enriched his life. He’s a man I know, a man I respect. Yet I always wondered how often he contemplates navigating that moment and what he would think about me having that UPS box.

Stevie Johnson was in Buffalo last month, and it was time to sort this out.

The play happened 10 years ago this weekend. In sudden death, Johnson sprung open behind the Pittsburgh Steelers’ secondary for the end zone. Ryan Fitzpatrick heaved a perfect spiral that Johnson stone dropped. The Buffalo Bills lost.'

 

This is both about the drop, and Stevie, and a mysterious box that Graham has had for years, that relates to it all. The article is behind a paywall I believe but I also know many here have a sub.

 

I can't say too much about it, as it would spoil the effect, but it's a terrific article. If it's been posted before, then please merge this.

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Reading this story about Stevie makes me want to tell the story about Stevie and another epic loss.  I've told this story a couple of times, and each time I tell it, people accuse me of blaming the lo

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7 minutes ago, Houston's #1 Bills Fan said:

Which one felt worse:

 

1. This play

2. The Cardinals Hail Mary

 

 

Hail mary not even close. Bills still had a chance to win after Stevie's drop. 

 

Losing on a last second hail mary is the ultimate gut punch. The fact that it happened right after the bills scored a dramatic, "game ending" TD to take the lead made it 10x worse. 

Edited by Process
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1 hour ago, Process said:

Hail mary not even close. Bills still had a chance to win after Stevie's drop. 

 

Losing on a last second hail mary is the ultimate gut punch. The fact that it happened right after the bills scored a dramatic, "game ending" TD to take the lead made it 10x worse. 

I agree. Total kick in the nuts losing that way, especially after getting the go-ahead score moments before.

 

Very same feeling to the Music City BS, but that one is top 3 greatest loss disappointments. No comparison to these games.

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I was in the stands that day. One of the most painful in-person losses I've ever witnessed. Sure, the game didn't really mean anything, but it was a chance to beat a good Steelers team. It would have been so sweet to shut up all the know-nothing Steelers knuckleheads sitting around is in our section.

Alas, I'm glad that experience was at least the catalyst for something positive for Stevie Johnson.

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1 hour ago, Houston's #1 Bills Fan said:

Which one felt worse:

 

1. This play

2. The Cardinals Hail Mary

 

 

 

#2 by a lot

 

SJ13 angrily blaming the father, son and holy ghost for making him drop the ball just made it a hat on a hat of Billsy.

 

SJ13 was a total screwball...........I am glad Bills fans don't have to have a nutcase like that as a face of the franchise type anymore.

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Reading this story about Stevie makes me want to tell the story about Stevie and another epic loss.  I've told this story a couple of times, and each time I tell it, people accuse me of blaming the loss on Stevie.  I'm not.  Well, sort of I'm not.  

 

It was November 3, 2013, and the undefeated Chiefs were at the Ralph.  It was the second start in Jeff Tuel's career, and it would be his last.  The Bills were up 10-3 at the half, and Tuel led the Bills on a great drive to open the third quarter.   The Bills had the ball inside the Chiefs' five yard-line, about to go up by at least 10, probably 14.  Tuel took the snap and immediately threw to Russell Wilson (no, just kidding) T.J. Graham on a quick, hard slant.  Sean Smith stepped in front of Graham, intercepted on the goal line and went 100 yards the other way.  The Bills later managed a third-quarter field goal and lost 23-13.  

 

Bills fans heaped it on Tuel.  Johnson was wide open over the middle - why didn't he throw it to him?  How could he possibly throw the ball directly at the defender?  Didn't he see the guy standing there? 

 

No, he didn't.  Quarterbacks look at the receiver, not at the spot where they want to throw the ball.  Tuel's job was to see if Graham broke inside his defender, and once Graham did, Tuel, looking at Graham to time the throw, threw the ball to the spot where Graham would be in another step or two or three.  The problem was that Smith was standing in that spot. 

 

What was Smith doing there?   Ah, here's where Stevie comes in.  

 

Stevie was lined up in the slot on the right side, maybe seven yards inside the wideout.  Smith lined up opposite Stevie, just off the line.  Stevie burst off the line with a big, hard jab step to his right, then cut hard to his left into the middle of the end zone.  He was open.  The move was so big and so quick, it forced Smith into a quick back pedal and step to his left.  In fact, Smith reacted so aggressively to Johnson's fake to the right that Smith stumbled and lost his balance a bit. By the time he regained his balance, Johnson was two steps ahead of him over the middle.  

 

Unfortunately for Tuel, the fake left Smith standing right where Tuel threw the ball.  The play was designed for Stevie to take Smith with him, and I'm not sure that Doug Marrone considered the possibility that Stevie would come off the line so aggressively that the defender simply wasn't able to follow him.  If Stevie just runs a straight, hard slant to the middle, Smith would have trailed him, and Graham would have had a touchdown.  

 

Give the Bills that TD, and take away Smith's TD, and the lowly Bills and Jeff Tuel beat the undefeated Chiefs.  All because Stevie was too good.  

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3 hours ago, DeltaDigital said:

d654bc1d15a0295553a31ef60e51bbde7e6c753a4c3acac2793cd2e0045aa3cf.jpg

 

Only God knows.

 

Maybe a new set of hands?

41 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

Reading this story about Stevie makes me want to tell the story about Stevie and another epic loss.  I've told this story a couple of times, and each time I tell it, people accuse me of blaming the loss on Stevie.  I'm not.  Well, sort of I'm not.  

 

It was November 3, 2013, and the undefeated Chiefs were at the Ralph.  It was the second start in Jeff Tuel's career, and it would be his last.  The Bills were up 10-3 at the half, and Tuel led the Bills on a great drive to open the third quarter.   The Bills had the ball inside the Chiefs' five yard-line, about to go up by at least 10, probably 14.  Tuel took the snap and immediately threw to Russell Wilson (no, just kidding) T.J. Graham on a quick, hard slant.  Sean Smith stepped in front of Graham, intercepted on the goal line and went 100 yards the other way.  The Bills later managed a third-quarter field goal and lost 23-13.  

 

Bills fans heaped it on Tuel.  Johnson was wide open over the middle - why didn't he throw it to him?  How could he possibly throw the ball directly at the defender?  Didn't he see the guy standing there? 

 

No, he didn't.  Quarterbacks look at the receiver, not at the spot where they want to throw the ball.  Tuel's job was to see if Graham broke inside his defender, and once Graham did, Tuel, looking at Graham to time the throw, threw the ball to the spot where Graham would be in another step or two or three.  The problem was that Smith was standing in that spot. 

 

What was Smith doing there?   Ah, here's where Stevie comes in.  

 

Stevie was lined up in the slot on the right side, maybe seven yards inside the wideout.  Smith lined up opposite Stevie, just off the line.  Stevie burst off the line with a big, hard jab step to his right, then cut hard to his left into the middle of the end zone.  He was open.  The move was so big and so quick, it forced Smith into a quick back pedal and step to his left.  In fact, Smith reacted so aggressively to Johnson's fake to the right that Smith stumbled and lost his balance a bit. By the time he regained his balance, Johnson was two steps ahead of him over the middle.  

 

Unfortunately for Tuel, the fake left Smith standing right where Tuel threw the ball.  The play was designed for Stevie to take Smith with him, and I'm not sure that Doug Marrone considered the possibility that Stevie would come off the line so aggressively that the defender simply wasn't able to follow him.  If Stevie just runs a straight, hard slant to the middle, Smith would have trailed him, and Graham would have had a touchdown.  

 

Give the Bills that TD, and take away Smith's TD, and the lowly Bills and Jeff Tuel beat the undefeated Chiefs.  All because Stevie was too good.  

 

I seem to remember some running back coughing the ball up on his way into the endzone that played a big part in that loss. For the life of me I can't remember his name.

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3 hours ago, Houston's #1 Bills Fan said:

Which one felt worse:

 

1. This play

2. The Cardinals Hail Mary

that hail mary was as painful as the wide right for me. although the stakes were obviously much higher with the kick, the pain was at the same level none the less.

 

that's what bills fans have done through the decades, endure the pain. what would/will be nice is if this team, led by JA, can finally win it all so all that pain endured was not in vain?

 

for me, the stevie drop was more frustrating then painful. I was pissed.

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22 minutes ago, Beast said:

 

Only God knows.

 

Maybe a new set of hands?

 

I seem to remember some running back coughing the ball up on his way into the endzone that played a big part in that loss. For the life of me I can't remember his name.

Was it Bryce Brown? Making the guess, without looking any of it up!

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