They roared for Ben Roethlisberger on Saturday night when he helped save the day. They waved their towels and shared his upraised-arms joy, and looked ahead for a shot at the Super Bowl. The dark days of 2010 were a long time ago, or at least sounded like it.
The Pittsburgh Steelers, down 21-7 at halftime, are still alive in the NFL playoffs and the quarterback is the toast of the town — more or less — having turned around the night with a 58-yard pass that set up the touchdown that beat the bitter enemies from Baltimore.
"I've got confidence in the guys," he would say later. "All I've got to do is throw it."
More than that, of course. And in the happy story of the Steelers, who showed once again Saturday why they are who they are with a 31-24 victory, nothing is more fascinating than the continuing rehabilitation of the image of their quarterback.