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The agony of a Steelers defeat, and which still sting today

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BTSC analyzes the pain of defeat and asks you to share what Steeler loss hurt the most.

AFC Championship - Pittsburgh Steelers v New England Patriots Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

Grantland Rice, author of “The Tumult and the Shouting” coined a very poignant phrase. You know it. “It's not whether you win or lose, it's how you play the game”. That’s all and good if you're eight and you’re eating out orange slices and slurping down a Capri Sun purchased by a forgetful mom minutes before game time, because she didn't remember it was her turn. But as a professional sports fan, there is sometimes little consolation.

As fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers, we have been blessed to have had a winner to root for the past 45 seasons. There have been great victories. Six Super Bowls and eight AFCCGs have been celebrated in the Steel City. If you throw in the Pirates and Penguins, then 13 Pro championships have been celebrated by the trio since the 70s began. We are spoiled and we want more. Nobody can blame us For thinking that way. We aren’t alone in this philosophy either. It's universal in sports.

So with the thrill of victory comes so much more in the way of the agony of defeat. Grantland Rice also wrote the words “Failure isn't bad if it doesn't attack the heart”. There have been 549 losses in the regular season for the Pittsburgh franchise. Throw in 24 more in the postseason. Some were expected, some were absolute shockers and some felt like your still beating heart just got ripped out of your rib cage, was spiked on the cold, hard concrete and stomped on by Andre the Giant wearing a pair of steel-toed boots.

I was there for three AFC Championship losses and have viewed many more in which it was a miracle that my television survived my rage. I remember the dreary days after a season-ender and my sadness that followed. I have bad memories of antagonists named Alfred Pupunu, Larry Brown, Jordy Nelson and Chris Hogan to name a few.

Of all the losses, I actually still feel the sting of losing to New England in January. It still remains sour to me. What regular season and what postseason loss stuck in your throat the most? Let us know in comments and here’s hoping the Steelers never top it.