New York Giants – Pittsburgh Steelers
New York Giants 24 • Pittsburgh Steelers 27
The Steelers missed the extra point and kicked off to the Giants, who were now led by rookie scrambler Gary Wood. With a minute to go in the half, Wood was picked off by corner Brady Keys, which led to a second Pittsburgh score right before the intermission.
Both teams engineered long scoring drives in the third quarter to keep the game close. Pittsburgh’s Brady Keys then set up the winning score in the final period with a 90-yard punt return. Keys was knocked out at the 1, but Ed Brown scored from there to put the Steelers up
27-21. Don Chandler added a 22-yard field goal, but he also missed one from the 37 to go with his two 42-yard misses from the first half.
New York was now 0-2 with an injured quarterback who suddenly looked old and feeble. Tittle would relieve Wood the following week against Washington and spark a victory, but he was injured again in the process. Although Tittle gamely would play in every game in 1964, the team finished the season 2-10-2. The championship run was over.
Frank’s Fling Fuels Feat
The Giants began the 1958 season struggling; they split their first four games before winning two in a row to take them to midseason with a 4-2 record, just one game behind Cleveland in the East. In the Western Conference, the Colts started the season 6-0, but they lost starting quarterback Johnny Unitas to a rib injury in a costly 56-0 win over Green Bay. Behind backup quarterback George Shaw, Baltimore came to Yankee Stadium for what would turn out to be an exciting prelude to the 1958 NFL Championship Game.
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The Giants began the game with a cannon blast, courtesy of one of their favorite plays. On the first play from scrimmage at the Giants’ 24-yard line, Frank Gifford took the pitch from Charley Conerly, rolled right, stopped, and threw the halfback option pass downfield. End Bob Schnelker caught the pass over his shoulder at the Giants’ 45 and began to rumble. Andy Nelson dove and missed Schnelker at the Colts’ 45 as Nelson cut back toward the left sideline. Finally, 32 yards downfield, cornerback Milt Davis wrestled Schnelker down at the 13, ending a 63-yard pass play. Four plays later, Alex Webster went over for the touchdown from the 5, and the Giants had a 7-0 lead three minutes into the contest. Late in the first quarter, Baltimore was stopped on fourth down at the Giants’ goal line, but then forced New York to punt. Taking over at the Giants’ 47, the Colts scored the tying touchdown in two plays an 11-yard run by Alan Ameche and a 36-yard strike from Shaw to Lenny Moore in the end zone. Shaw added a 23-yard touchdown pass to Raymond Berry in the second quarter, and Baltimore led 14-7 at the half.
New York began double-teaming both Moore and Berry in the second half and held the Colts scoreless in the third period, while Conerly led the Giants to two touchdowns. The first touchdown was set up by the sort of improvisation later made famous by fellow Mississippian Brett Favre. Conerly was sandwiched by two Colts blitzers, Bill Pellington and Don Shinnick, but he managed to shove the ball forward to halfback Phil King, who darted for a first
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