Hidden Play: Week 5 vs Atlanta


By G.Stryker

Games are full of special moments.  Most are easy to see and are part of the highlight reel each week.  Some moments happen just out of the limelight of the big play, but without their efforts those big plays don’t happen.  These hidden plays can be a block, a pressure, a tip or football IQ creating the impact that is the difference between success and failure.

The unsung hero this week is Tyson Alualu.  Alu-Who?  I don’t remember him playing?  Well Alualu didn’t log any stats on the defensive score sheet, even though he logged 29 snaps on defense.  No tackles, no sacks, no passes defensed, but his impact made sure the Steeler defense scored a touchdown instead of a safety.

At the end of the game, Matt Ryan drops back to pass and TJ Watt beats his man around the edge to force a strip sack.  As the ball rolls toward the end zone, Bud Dupree accidentally kicks it as he tries to make a play, and the ball is headed toward the back of the end zone.  If the ball makes it through the end zone, it would be ruled a safety and 2 points would be awarded instead of 6.  LJ Fort and Alualu are racing for the bouncing ball.  Alualu recognizes that Fort is going to get there first, but also realized that Fort may slide out of the end zone before he can recover the football.  So what does he do?  He slides around behind Fort plants his cleats, and pushes Fort’s body, to make sure no part of him touched the white out of bounds line.

The reverse angle replay shows how perfectly Alualu executed this hidden play to give the Steelers 6 points instead of 2.  It just goes to show you, you don’t have to show up on the stat sheet to make a difference in the game.  Thank you Tyson Alualu for this great hidden play and excellent football awareness!


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