Super Bowl XLV Game Preview

| February 3rd, 2011

Editor’s Note: T-shirt presentation will be next week.  We’ll present a few options by midweek.

I’ll wake up Sunday morning with about as little enthusiasm for a Super Bowl as I’ve ever had.  Losing on Championship Sunday relegates “the big game” to an excuse for drunken ribaldry – not than an excuse is required.  Maybe I’m biased but this game has very little juice.  The New York sports media has been overwhelmed with Madoff and the Mets.  The Chicago media is rightfully Bulls crazy.  ESPN has tried to create story lines over the last ten days but there has been far more coverage about the league and the upcoming CBA debate.  Nevertheless, I pick the game.

Pittsburgh Steelers
Green Bay Packers

Why do I Like the Pittsburgh Steelers this week?
  • I never like the Green Bay Packers.
  • With the Packers offensive line, they’ll have no hope of establishing any ground game against the Steelers.  This means they’ll need to invoke the Patriots-spread attack that has dominated Pitt for years.  I don’t like teams straying from what they do best in the Super Bowl and the spread is not what the Packers do best.
  • You can run the ball on the Packers and the Steelers will certainly find that out.  But when the Packers go all-out to pressure, I look for Rashard Mendenhall and Heath Miller to be major factors in the short passing game.  The Bears left multiple first downs on the field two weeks ago.  The Steelers take what’s there.
  • The Pack should get pressure on Ben Roethlisberger.  Multiple sacks. (Matthews, Raji)
  • The Steelers should get pressure on Aaron Rodgers.  Multiple sacks. (Harrison, Timmons)
  • If it comes down to which signal caller is the better big game player, I’m taking the Unwanted Sexual Advances in a Barroom Toilet.  Rodgers has a putrid record in close games and Large Benjamin has proven it on the sport’s biggest stage.
  • This is a big moment for Rodgers, however.  He’s struggled against Chicago and the Jets, the two best defenses he faces this season.  Now he’s facing the best defense in the league.  A poor effort might have some calling him a quarterback who stacks his numbers against inferior opponents.  And by “some” I mean “me”.
  • If this game comes down to the kickers, I like Mason Crosby.
  • Coin flip: Packers
  • MVP: Rashard Mendenhall
Pittsburgh Steelers 20, Green Bay Packers 17