As soon as I saw it happen, I knew it would cost the Vikings dearly.
Brett Favre threw a touchdown pass to Sidney Rice with more than 6 minutes to play to put the Vikings up on the Steelers, 16-13, only it didn't count, as one of the referees threw a flag on tight end Jeff Dugan, claiming he had tripped James Harrison as Favre threw the pass. The replays, showed that it was the wrong call, and the Fox announcers agreed as well.
And sure enough, on the next play, Favre was stripped of the ball and it was returned for a Pittsburgh touchdown, and instead of 17-13 Vikings, it was 20-10 Steelers, and it sent the game in a whole new direction.
Granted, you can't play football in a vacuum, but it may very well have cost the Vikings their seventh straight win, as Pittsburgh went on to a 27-17 victory. It was a tough game all day, as it was 10-7 Pittsburgh at the half.
Percy Harvin then returned the next kickoff 89 yards for a TD to make it 20-16. (Did anyone else notice on the kickoff that Dugan collided with one of the refs and the injured man had to leave the field? Revenge perhaps?)
But the Vikings comeback came to crashing end with a minute to play, as Favre attempted a pass to Chester Taylor and it went through his hands (he should have caught it) and was returned for a TD to ice Pittsburgh's win.
This was a hard loss to take, but the Vikings showed that they can play with the so-called "glamour" teams of the NFL, and it's one they really could have (as well as should have) won. One big knock on the Vikings was that they made way too many penalties (10, and one that shouldn't have been called), and that has to be addressed.
They have a big game next week, as the rematch with the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau next Sunday awaits.