This year’s Super Bowl is one that has football fans foaming at the mouth and it undoubtedly features the two most balanced teams in the NFL. The Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers share many similar factors that caused them to represent their respective conferences in the Super Bowl.
Both of these teams boast top five defenses that were both statistically ranked first and second in total sacks and total interceptions forced over the course of the regular season. Troy Polamalu was named defensive player of the year, followed closely by outstanding outside linebacker Clay Matthews of the Packers. Let’s not forget last year’s defensive player of the year was the Packers’ Charles Woodson. Everyone can remember just a few, short years ago in Super Bowl XLV, when James Harrison’s pick six at the end of the first half served as a catalyst in changing the momentum and determining the outcome of that game.
In addition, these teams feature two bright young coaches in Mike McCarthy, who only three years ago made the tough call to stick with Aaron Rodgers, and Mike Tomlin, who has already won himself one Super Bowl and is searching for another in his young, promising career.
Still, the quarterbacks may be the most important factors. The Packers’ Aaron Rodgers had to wait three years behind Brett Favre, who once said that it was not his job to mentor his young backup. Who knew that Rodgers would become an instant success upon taking the starting role from Favre? Apparently Ted Thomson and Mike McCarthy did. His passer rating was over 100 in the regular season and is over 115 in his postseason starts, which is an absolutely staggering and almost incomprehensible number in the competitive NFL. On the other hand, he faces a man who has found Super Bowl success twice before in Ben Roethlisberger.
When considering a defense that is filed with savvy veterans and determined coaches in Mike Tomlin and incredible defensive coordinator Dick Lebeau, football fans can appreciate the daunting task that the Packers face when they come face to face with the Steelers.
Pittsburgh is looking to establish a dynasty by winning three Super Bowls over the past 6 seasons, all with Big Ben at the helm. They have a good shot, considering Roethlisberger is seemingly invincible both on and off the field. The Steelers also have an excellent running back in Rashard Mendenhall, who absolutely annihilated the loudmouth Jets in the AFC Championship game. Other than Aaron Rodgers, he might be the key to the big game when considering the Packers’ only possible flaw defensively is stopping the run.
That being said, I like the Packers to leave Jerry Jones’ new stadium victorious after Sunday’s clash between these two teams. Rodgers and his receivers are on fire right now and even though the Steelers can pressure the passer and confuse any quarterback better than any other team in the league, I refuse to believe this team can be beaten until I see it. They are just that hot.
My mom has always told me there are no coincidences in life and I would like to believe it this year. This is the year Brett Favre finally takes himself out of the game because he has taken a beating for too long and it should be the same year that the Packers surmount his shadow and almost omnipotent presence and reward Ted Thomson and Mike McCarthy for sticking with an unproven Aaron Rodgers.
The Packers are the only team standing in the way of the Steelers from forming a dynasty, but it seems like they are well equipped to reward the cheese heads and Wisconsin with a Super Bowl title. In the midst of the end of Brett Favre’s streak, career and the dynasty that the Steelers aspire to establish in Jerry Jones’ new stadium in Dallas, Green Bay will prevail.