“Allow me to make this disclaimer: What you are about to read comes from the mind of a die-hard, however, reasonable Steelers fan. Now that everything but the hangover is finished regarding Super Sunday, it’s time to take a step back and analyze what we found out about the participants of the biggest game of the year: 1.””
Allow me to make this disclaimer: What you are about to read comes from the mind of a die-hard yet reasonable Steelers fan.
Now that everything but the hangover is finished regarding Super Sunday, it’s time to take a step back and analyze what we found out about the participants of the biggest game of the year:
1. Kurt Warner is a Hall of Famer. What began as the most improbable story in NFL history, from grocery boy to Super Bowl M.V.P. has transformed into one of the more impressive careers of this decade. Warner carved up the top-ranked defense in the league to the tune of 377 yards and three touchdowns. Granted he threw a costly pick at the end of the first half, but keep in mind he had the….. Ahem… ARIZONA CARDINALS within one minute of taking home the Lombardi Trophy. His future may be uncertain, but it’s hard to deny that Warner’s past should earn him a bust in Canton.
2. James Harrison is a bad dude. If you’re lucky enough to have watched a Steelers game this year, you, not unlike opposing quarterbacks, became well-acquainted with number 92. While he may not have gotten to Kurt Warner by way of the blitz, the Akron native’s record 100 yard interception return single-handedly shifted the momentum back to the Steelers. The NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year has been responsible for countless big plays and was the most important piece of the Steelers dominating defense this season.
3. The refs didn’t cost the Cardinals. Leave it to Cleveland fans to complain about another team getting screwed. Granted, Pittsburgh received a fair amount of calls in Super Bowl XL against the Seahawks. However, the Steelers victory this time around was not the result of poor officiating. It was the result of the game’s best clutch quarterback doing what he does best. Kurt Warner’s arm was not going forward on that controversial final play, as it was clearly a fumble. And quit crying about the running into the holder penalty. Pittsburgh still left that drive with only three points, making that questionable flag irrelevant.
4. Larry Fitzgerald will be the best receiver since Jerry Rice. The guy I call the best collegiate football player ever has transitioned nicely into the NFL. Fitzgerald received a ridiculous amount of attention in the weeks leading up to the big game. And deservedly so. Fitzgerald was so dominant he had already topped Rice’s record for receiving yards in a post-season by the end of the NFC Championship. Fitz, as he’s called, also pulled in seven touchdowns throughout the postseason, another play-off record. Because he plays on a team that receives zero attention during the regular season, Fitzgerald never received the appropriate coverage he deserved. Luckily the world got to see what he’s capable of on Super Sunday.
5. Ben Roethlisberger is the definition of clutch. Big Ben can be difficult to watch the first three and a half quarters of a game. But when it’s all on the line, there is simply no one better. His drop-off as far as numbers go is eye-popping. In 2007, Big Ben threw 32 touchdowns to 11 picks. This past season, he cut his touchdowns nearly in half, 17, and threw four more picks, 15. He also added a new negative to repertoire, taking way too many sacks. But when the game hangs in the balance, Roethlisberger elevates his play to a level, with all due respect to Brady and Manning, that we have not seen in quite some time. Is it always pretty? Absolutely not. But 2 Lombardi Trophies in 5 years will help even the most cynical fan (like myself) forget all about his not so impressive numbers.