It's tough to win on the road. It's even more difficult to do so in the bitter cold and snow when you are a team based in warm and sunny South Florida.
Greatest on the road ...
Charles Clay, Miami Dolphins
It had to be a soul-crushing defeat for the Pittsburgh Steelers, whose reputation has been built on supposedly being tougher than their foes. That is apparently more myth than reality. On a day seemingly built for the once-rugged Steelers, it was the team from Florida that came away with a win in the cold and snow in a crucial game in the AFC playoff chase.
En route to the pivotal 34-28 win, the Dolphins tallied the most points they've posted all season and racked up 360 yards of total offense. This happened in the cold and snow, and against the once-formidable Steelers. Helping lead the charge was Charles Clay, the "Claymaker" if you will. Clay caught two touchdown passes in the win, including the score that put the Dolphins up for good. On that 12-yard score, Clay fought through the tackle attempts of Cortez Allen and Troy Polamalu to burst toward the end zone. That high-effort play capped an 80-yard drive in the fourth quarter that gave Miami a 31-28 lead with 2:53 remaining. A last-ditch attempt to claim victory (a five-lateral comedy of desperation) by the Steelers was a failure, and with that the team's playoff hopes have almost totally vanished.
The Dolphins, meanwhile, are in the thick of the AFC wild-card race after the team's first win in Pittsburgh in 23 years.
Jason Campbell, Cleveland Browns
In the heart-wrenching 27-26 defeat in Foxborough, Campbell -- who had missed the Browns' previous game due to a concussion -- threw for 291 yards and three touchdowns (without a single interception). That yardage total represented a career high for Campbell, who also tied a career high with those three touchdown passes. Campbell's performance helped receiver Josh Gordon set a mark for most receiving yards in a four-game span (774 yards, topping Calvin Johnson's total of 746 from 2013).
Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs
Apparently highly motivated by the local soccer football club's epic triumph in MLS Cup the day before (among other things), the Chiefs -- owners of the NFL's worst record in 2012 -- inched closer to a playoff berth by dump trucking the hapless Washington Redskins, 45-10. En route to their largest margin of victory in seven seasons, the Chiefs got a punt-return touchdown from Dexter McCluster, a kickoff-return touchdown from Quintin Demps and two touchdowns from Charles (one rushing and one receiving).
Charles finished the day with 151 yards rushing on the snow-powdered FedExField turf. That effort -- coupled with the rushing touchdown -- helped Charles become the fifth player in Chiefs history with 1,000-plus yards rushing and 10-plus rushing touchdowns in the same season, joining Larry Johnson (2005, 2006), Priest Holmes (2002, 2003), the "Nigerian Nightmare"Christian Okoye (1989) and Abner Haynes (1962).
Previous Greatness on the Road winners:
» Week 1: Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
» Week 2: Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins
» Week 3: Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
» Week 4: Tom Brady, New England Patriots
» Week 5: Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs
» Week 6: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
» Week 7: A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals
» Week 8: Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers
» Week 9: Nick Foles, Philadelphia Eagles
» Week 10: Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions
» Week 11: Matt McGloin, Oakland Raiders
» Week 12: Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers
» Week 13: Eric Decker, Denver Broncos