Tom Brady makes the most un-Tom Brady play imaginable at a crucial moment in the Patriots' loss to the Steelers

  • Tom Brady threw an awful interception at a critical moment in the Patriots' loss to the Steelers on Sunday.
  • Brady's decision to throw the ball up as the pocket collapsed around him was shockingly uncharacteristic, and gave a huge swing of momentum to the Steelers.
  • The Patriots have now lost consecutive games in December for the first time since 2002.

The Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the New England Patriots on Sunday in a nail-biter, thanks in part to one critical, awful decision from quarterback Tom Brady.

Heading into Sunday's game, both teams were in need of a win. The Steelers, once a lock for the playoffs, were reeling after three straight losses. Another loss would put Pittsburgh on the outside of a crowded race for the postseason in the AFC.

The Patriots needed a win maintain their hold on a first-round bye ahead of the Houston Texans. New England was also coming off of an embarrassing loss to the Miami Dolphins last week.

Read more:Dolphins pull off stunning upset over Patriots with last-second hook-and-ladder play

Down four points late in the fourth quarter, Brady had the New England offense marching down the field for what would have been the go-ahead score.

See photos from the game: 

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NFL Week 15: Patriots lose to Steelers
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NFL Week 15: Patriots lose to Steelers
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) lines up behind center during the second half of an NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. The Steelers won 17-10. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) is tackled by Pittsburgh Steelers free safety Sean Davis (21) and Coty Sensabaugh (24) during the second half of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Don Wright)
Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt (90) calls the crowd to action as New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) huddles his team during the second half of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. The Steelers won 17-10. (AP Photo/Don Wright)
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws a pass during the second half of an NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. The Steelers won 17-10. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown (84) and New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore (24) get in a shoving match during the second half of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Joe Haden (23) intercepts a pass intended for New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman (11) during the second half of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
New England Patriots running back James White (28) is tackled by Pittsburgh Steelers free safety Sean Davis (21) during the first half of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) throws a pass during the second half of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jaylen Samuels (38) is tackled by New England Patriots free safety Devin McCourty (32) during the first half of an NFL football game in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018. (AP Photo/Don Wright)
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick talks to reporters during the news conference after an NFL football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018, in Pittsburgh. The Steelers won 17-10. (AP Photo/Don Wright)
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On second and goal from the Steelers' 16-yard line, Brady made a baffling decision. As the pocket collapsed around him, Brady wildly threw the ball towards the sidelines.

Though Brady attempted to get the ball out of bounds, Steelers cornerback Joe Haden intercepted the pass to give Brady his first red zone interception since December, 2016.  

This is a common rookie mistake in the NFL, but is as baffling a decision as you'll ever see from a quarterback as protective of the ball as Brady. 

On Twitter, the sports world was dumbfounded by Brady's decision.

Rather than getting another shot at the end zone, Brady turned the ball over and handed an extra possession to the Steelers, who would go on to score a field goal on the ensuing drive.

Brady would get his shot at redemption, but fall short. On fourth-and-15 from just outside the red zone, Brady's final pass would get knocked down in the end zone, turning the ball, and the game, over to the Steelers.

The Patriots have now lost consecutive games in December for the first time since 2002. New England will take on the Bills and Jets to finish their season, but will now need help to earn a first-round playoff bye. 

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