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Instant Debate

Experts reflect on their top game of 2010

Now that our list of the top 20 games of 2010 has concluded, we asked our experts to pick their favorite games of the season.

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  • Jason La Canfora NFL Network
  • Five quarters of goodness

I am biased here, because I got to watch a good deal of this game from the Jets' sidelines, but their wild, last-second Week 10 overtime win over Cleveland was a real joy to watch.

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  </table> The Browns put up a tremendous fight, with Colt McCoy showing his moxy and will while rallying the Browns and forcing overtime with a veteran-like drive, and Mark Sanchez played with panache as well. Hurt players hurled themselves across the field to make plays. There was plenty of drama and intrigue, with Eric Mangini's controversial decision to call a timeout, followed by dubious play-calling, and then a punt from the end zone that allowed the Jets the chance to break the tie with overtime nearly expired.  

And then Sanchez capped it all with a connection to Santonio Holmes for a desperate, last-ditch touchdown for the win. This game held your attention all the way through five quarters and was my favorite game of 2010.

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  • Vic Carucci
  • Victory, literally, fell through their hands

My pick is the Steelers' 19-16 overtime win over the Bills in Week 12. Surprisingly, this had as much drama as any game of the season. The Steelers figured to have a reasonably easy time with the struggling Bills. But this proved to be a battle to the very end that the Bills actually should have won. Buffalo fought back from a 13-point deficit at halftime and forced overtime by tying the game with two seconds left in regulation. The Bills literally had victory in their hands when Ryan Fitzpatrick connected with a wide-open Stevie Johnson in the end zone in OT … but Johnson dropped the ball. Afterward, Steelers players, to a man, said they were happy to not have to deal with the Bills again on their Super Bowl run.

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  • Steve Wyche
  • Division rivals' playoff clash

It might not have been the most entertaining, in terms of offense, but the twists, turns and knotted-stomach flow of Pittsburgh's 31-24 victory over the Ravens in the AFC divisional playoffs is my pick. It looked like a cake walk when Baltimore's defense helped it post a 21-7 halftime lead, but the Ravens came totally unglued during the third quarter, committing turnover after turnover that allowed Pittsburgh's stunning rally. The play of the game, though, was rookie Antonio Brown's 58-yard catch that set up Rashard Mendenhall's game-winning touchdown run in the waning moments.

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  • Pat Kirwan
  • Big Ben's gritty performance

The best game I watched last season was the Week 13 matchup between the Steelers and Ravens. Even after Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata broke Ben Roethlisberger's nose early on, the Steelers quarterback showed grit in fighting back. After Troy Polamalu's sack of Joe Flacco forced a fumble, Roethlisberger hit Isaac Redman with 2:51 left in the game to clinch the 13-10 win.

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  • Charles Davis NFL Network
  • Falcons come up big when it counts

The best game of 2010 was Falcons-Buccaneers in Week 13, a game that ultimately kept the up-and-coming Bucs out of the playoffs and allowed the Falcons to continue to show the league that they know how to win tough games, on the road no less. This win exemplified how far the Falcons have come as an organization, and as a team, as they had to battle the entire game. The Falcons consistently made winning plays at crucial times (Eric Weems' huge kick return for a touchdown, Brent Grimes' game-sealing interception) against a team that felt their time had arrived in Tampa Bay. Just a tremendous game, literally from start to finish.

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  • Elliot Harrison
  • It doesn't get any better

Of course I picked the "Miracle at New Meadowlands" as my top game. After counting down the top 20, this is the one everyone remembers, and will for years to come. It featured a 21-point comeback, some superhuman Michael Vick runs in a fight for the NFC East title and maybe the most memorable punt return in NFL history.

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  • Bucky Brooks
  • Super conclusion to season

The best game has to be Super Bowl XLV. The game wasn't necessarily the best to watch from an execution standpoint, but I absolutely loved how the Packers responded to the challenge of playing without two of their leaders -- Charles Woodson and Donald Driver -- for the majority of the game. This was emblematic of their season, as they continued to show the resiliency that catapulted them to the title following an injury-plagued season.

Aaron Rodgers also solidified his status among the elite by delivering on the game's biggest stage. He posted big numbers (24-39 for 304 yards and three touchdowns) and had a handful of throws that illustrated his ability to perform in the clutch. Legends are born in the postseason, and Rodgers' stellar performance here capped a sensational playoff run.

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