Super Bowl XLV Game Preview

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
over
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
CHICAGO TRIBUNE VIDEO

Comments

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  • No Super Bowl contest from da blog this year?

  • 4 words: who gives a shit? this is the only SB i haven't cared about (honestly, looking forward to Saturday's UFC & Bulls-Golden State than this lackluster shit here)

  • yo MB:

    "Stop hatin' blend your own bacon FQ."

    sorry...not all the way adept on white ppl lingo. the hell does this mean lol

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    http://ryanrobot.tumblr.com/post/3050663577/stop-hatin-blend-your-own-bacon

  • In reply to gpldan:

    ROOOOFLMAO!!!!! "finger fuck that sauce"

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Thanks for the assist GP.

    Dude, FQ... "not all the way adept on white ppl lingo"

    ...that shit made me cry laughing.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Posted this on the last game day thread of the season.

    Who I will root for in two weeks:
    Before I moved to Chicago I did not have a team. I watched football because I love the game, but I did not support any one team. I think two great teams will play this year. The Steelers are the kind of dynasty that I think the Bears can be with some good building in the next 2-3 years. The Packers are a worthy adversary that is helping us bring respect back to the Black and Blue division. I will be hoping for a great game and will be pleased to see the best team win. The only dissapointment for me will be a blowout.

    Prediction:
    Packers 27, Steelers 24

  • In reply to mottystone:

    Well, the latest line I saw was Packers, -3.

    It'll be a Packer crowd, too.

    Those Cowboy fans HATE the Steelers for those 2 Super Bowl defeats.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    I wonder what percentage of attendees will be local fans... Everything is so commercial these days, it seems like everyone is flying in for it.

  • In reply to mottystone:

    Good luck with that "flying" thing. Besides the nasty weather playing havoc with planned festivities and the independent cabbies are on strike. Jerra J. cannot be pleased.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    Too bad for Jerry. A big boo-hoo from me. Not sure about the crowd. Everything I've read over the years said the Steelers fans have the biggest presence on the road in the NFL.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    "Greatness"?

    Go figure.

    I always thought one side of the helmet was for GOUDA and the other for GORGONZOLA.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    or GAG.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    I'm just ready for the Super Bowl to be over, so we can get on with the CBA stuff. To me, that's much more interesting.

  • In reply to sjvl:

    I won't even watch the game. No interest what so ever.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    The husband is a Steelers fan (sort of - more like the old days Steelers). Anyway, I am sure we will tune in, but honestly, I don't really care. Don't even know what time it's on...

  • In reply to sjvl:

    I'll probably skip it as well...

  • In reply to gpldan:

    You guys are not going to watch the superbowl? un-American!

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    +1. It's the last game of the season. I'm going to watch it. I hate basketball. I'm so-so on baseball (Cubs fan, go figure) and I like Hockey. I'm pulling for the Steelers big time.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    Pretty good read gents. If you have the time, go for it,

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news?slug=teamreports-2011-nfl-chi&bcmt=7938037#mwpphu-comment-7938037

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    Anyone see this yet. He's a 6'4/220lb WR but can he play?

    http://www.chicagobears.com/news/NewsStory.asp?story_id=7556

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    We'll watch it, OK!!!!! :)

    Hate for Da Mustache to question my citizenship!!!

  • In reply to sjvl:

    Good post Jeff.

    "I never like the Green Bay Packers."

    Well, neither do I. I'll root for the Steelers to beat the pack and Rogers. The media have been tonguing his B&*ls since they won the NFC Championship. I'm so done hearing about him. I'm not a big fan of Big Ben either but I LOVE Defense and the Steelers have a GREAT one. MVP = Hines Ward. GO STEELERS! Beat those fudgepackers down!

  • In reply to Reichwolff:

    I am on a 99% sports media blackout, just because I could not stand to hear all the fellatio this week.

  • In reply to sjvl:

    Boo!

    http://a57.foxnews.com/static/managed/img/Entertainment/2010/397/224/charlieteethtmzrestrix.jpg

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Makes me think how some of these fucking idiots are famous.

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    He's the only fucker in Tinseltown I know of to let Meth get a hold of him.

    Then again, when his girlfriend 20 years ago was Ginger Lynn, I figured he was a special breed of crazy.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Favre's sis has the SHIT!

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    Wow, it that Charlie Sheen? Fres, that's what happens when some people get everything handed to them on a Silver Platter. Very sad really.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    Meth not only ruins teeth, in one year he'll look like a 80 year old. Hopefully he'll get some help. It's not too late for him. Remeber Robert Downey Jr. he went off the deep end too and now look at him He's BIG since his clean up.

  • In reply to Reichwolff:

    Yeah but that Cat could always act.

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    Read today that Champ Bailey might be availible this offseason. What do you guys think, go after him or is he too old? (33)

  • In reply to Joseph:

    Probably too high of a price tag for a guy who will be tripping over his nutsack in a year or two...

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    LOL! The image is horrible, but damn funny.

  • In reply to Reichwolff:

    haha...I dred the day when that happens to me.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    good one, Coach.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    Allow me to reiterate my joy at being female once again. EEEEEEWWWWW.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    HELP ME!!!!!

    I am utterly surrounded by Rapelesberger shirts!!!! How a self respecting woman could wear that jersey is beyond me. Wear a Troy, a Heinz, a Mendenhall, anything.

    I never wish for Monday on Friday, but I am doing it today. Ugh, but wait; the celebration will be in full swing MONDAY!!! Well, at least it's not the Eagles...

  • In reply to sjvl:

    Yeah, what's next? A dog wearing a Vick jersey? Idiots.

  • In reply to sjvl:

    +1 I have done the same since the bears have lost. Not once have I watched NFL network or espn.

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    I have particularly given up Mike & Mike, which I enjoyed for a long time. If I could get just "Mike" (Greenberg), I would listen, but that other fat ass is DEAD to me.

  • In reply to sjvl:

    +1 sjvl.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Oh My GAWD.

    That is so nasty.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    That shit was fucking hilarious. The sheer audacity. Loved it.

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    I send urine dipped hatred to the Pack.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    So, GP, you SENT a SCENT?

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    If you could have done it for a penny, you'd have

    SENT a SCENT for a CENT!

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    Work that one into a Burma Shave ad.

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    Trying to imagine Mike McCaskey uttering the words "we'd rather not have the money."

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/03/sports/football/03rooney.html

    Go Steelers.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Great article about a great organization. I just wish I didn't hate Rapistberger so much. My hatred for him overwhelms my admiration for Rooney, Tomlin, Miller, Polamalu, Harrison, Farrior . . . on an on. Awesome guys on that team.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Boo!

    http://cdn.bleacherreport.net/images_root/slides/photos/000/677/139/108127561_display_image.jpg?1296337888

  • In reply to gpldan:

    I want to see James Harrison win the MVP and get fined for a completely legal hit on Rodgers for the exact amount of his MVP bonus.

    Quote from Harrisson "I'd rather not have the money."

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Wow. THAT right there is what I want. Looks like I would have had to be a steelers fan groing up to get it. Fucking McCaskey's.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/03/sports/football/03nfllabor.html?src=un&feedurl=http%3A%2F%2Fjson8.nytimes.com%2Fpages%2Fsports%2Ffootball%2Findex.jsonp

  • In reply to gpldan:

    I'm rooting for an outbreak of the ebola virus in both locker rooms.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    Will the Hunta virus do?

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Any one who wants to take the Pack; I'd be happy to wager with you. That aint happening.

  • In reply to Crowned:

    I was gonna take a wager Crown, then my stomach started feeling like it was time to throw up. I just CAN NOT bet on the Pack.

  • In reply to iamndmurff:

    Good job, Murph.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    I'd rather watch BJ Raji's dog lick peanut butter of her bajayjay or all 13 episodes of Gary Busey's reality show "I'm with Busey"

  • In reply to Crowned:

    That show was the cat's ass.

    (That's a good thing)

  • In reply to Crowned:

    Did you guys know that the "G" on Green Bay's helmets stands for something other than Green Bay? It actually stands for "Greatness"

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Speaking of helmet emblems, isn't it about time the Steelers pony up and put one on BOTH sides of their helmets?

  • Good post, Jeff. Agree 100%. It will be interesting to see how the Steelers handle the spread O. Rodgers looked good against us until Peppers rang his bell. I wouldn't be surprised if Rodgers gets his bell rung again on Sunday.

  • In reply to CanadaBear:

    He said after the NFC Championship game that the new helmet saved him from a concussion.

  • I think the Pack win this one in lopsided fashion. Even though Mr. Rogers plays for the enemy, I have to give the guy props for being such an effective, accurate and consistent QB. I wish we had him on our team. As long as he calls the signals for the Cheese, the Bears will be chasing or looking at at the Pack in their rear view mirror. This guy will be twice the QB Favre ever was and Cutler needs to elevate his game to this guys level.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    Twice the QB Favre ever was? Really? Favre won the MVP award 3 years in a row. 508 TD's and 70,000+ yds. Rodgers will never reach those numbers, ever. I agree Rodgers might win more Championships and won't throw as many INT's. + he's a better runner. However, Rodgers had 2 concussions this year (and that's not counting Pep's hit 10 days ago). If he plays for 12-15 years he could be a great one. I'm not sure he will last that long.

  • In reply to CanadaBear:

    Voice. Of. Reason.

  • In reply to CanadaBear:

    Ok, I'll admit that was over the top. I don't think it's a stretch to say that a lot of Bears fans(me included) have been jealous over Green Bays QB situation over the years. I think Rogers has come out of the gate much stronger than Favre did at the same point in time in his career and I think he's going to be a Staubach type QB as the years go on. Our DB's feasted on Favre's bad decisions and from that standpoint, I don't think Rogers will make near as many bad throws over the course of his career. It would probably be more accurate to say I don't think Rogers will throw half as many picks as Favre through the rest of his career. From that standpoint, at the end of the day, I would take Rogers over Favre in his prime.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    He's off to a great start but he's got a long way to go. I'm just pissed how lucky the Packers were. The guy fell into their lap. Even that dumbass JA would have taken him in the same scenario.

  • In reply to CanadaBear:

    Must be all the mentoring he received from Fav-re.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    SMH........

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    Pack will lose simply cause Steelers have a Better D. Pack cant run the ball, and will be Exposed in the passing game.
    Pack run D sucks, and mendenhall will chew them up.

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    I hope they don't fall behind early and give up on the run the way the Bears did. If they can control the Packers O early and control the clock by running it down Green Bays throat then it should make for an easy game for the Steelers.

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    I'm just hoping a swarm of locusts will decend upon the field and devour both teams. You have the Dbag QB vs the rapist. But after watching the Bears v GB game I think the fix is in and the Fudge will win. The NFL needs their next Montana or Manning and they've been pushing Rodgers as that product.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    Screwed again, how does sex cannon not make this list?

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/multimedia/photo_gallery/0901/superbowl.qb.worstgames/content.10.html

  • Jeff, at least the Packers were in every game they played this year. That's what I want to see from our Team next year.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    The only game the Bears weren't in was the New England game. Other than that they competed in every one.

  • In reply to jbenton:

    Not only that, but I would proffer that we should have won every game but the NE game.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    The Lions lost 10 games by an average of 7 pts a game, The Bears lost 5 games by an average of 11 pts a game. Take away the Lions and the Bears games against the Pats and the Bears had a loss margin of 7pts, the Lions had a loss margin of 6pts a game. The Packers never lost a game by more than 3pts. The Steelers lost 4 games with an 8pt margin of loss. I don't think you can say Green Bay has a horrible record in close games and infer that makes them a weak team.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    weaker team.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    I don't see it gents. All the Packer choosing... how i thee hell can you chose them? Not only because we hate them and their troll fans, but because the steelers have the #1 defense by a 30 point spread to #2. We were #4.

    Seeing how Rodgers played us in all 3 games tells me he's going to get destroyed against the yellow and black. Another shitty game. And I hope harrison gets that fine... new helmet be damned. Also, pitt has a serious run game and rapenburger is an ellusive bastard (just ask that poor coed). I don't know, I don't see any way the pack wins this... but wtf do I know, maybe that's just my hatred speaking?

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Upon further reflection, my 27-24 score does seem high. But I still think the Packers have the tools to pull out a win... so 17-14 also makes sense to me.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    MB.....I have heard you state that "30 point difference" of scoring differential multiple times...I'm almost positive it's only 8. I think it's like 252 for Pitt and 260 for GB...either that or 242 to 250. I', only 90% sure on this but I've also heard that they packers gave up .5 more points per game than pittsburgh, which would correlate to 8 total points..so it's not really a huge thing, but I just didn't understand why you have emphasized that "30 point gap" several times....I could be wrong but I think it's only 8. For what it's worth, the packers also have the second highest point differential in the league, by a pretty large margin. Patriots had the first.

    These teams are both on the same level. The steelers could very well win this game, but their slight underdog status does not really come as a surprise. The packers can definitely win this game, without question. Your bias is definitely clouding your judgement

  • In reply to brocklanders:

    I meant to specify "30 point scoring DEFENSE differential." and I just checked...it's 232 for Pitt and 240 for the pack. The bears were at 286. And I misspoke, the packers 2nd highest scoring differential is not by a large margin; it's only 5 points better than the steelers, who are 17 points better than the next team

  • In reply to brocklanders:

    I looked for the specific article that stated it, but it obviously wasn't based on scoring DEFENSE differential Wrig. as I thought it was... it could have been YPG or rushing yards allowed per game, but the steelers beat us in all of these areas... and the packers did not have impressive O stats in any of our 3 games this year.

    http://www.nfl.com/stats/team?seasonId=2010&seasonType=REG&Submit=Go

    My basic point is, that is the Packer's O doesn't do well against good defenses that bring pressure... how are they going to do against the best D in the league who brings the most pressure and every one of their LBs is a freaking beast. I just don't see it going well for Rodgers and his buddies.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    No shit MB. I would never, ever root for the Packers. If, and I do mean IF I watch the SB, it will be for the commercials.

    I am surrounded by Steelers propaganda. "Stairway to Seven" is the newest catch phrase. I just want it all to be over.

  • In reply to jbenton:

    Agreed.

  • In reply to jbenton:

    RT @peggykusinski: #Bears hire Mike Phair as D-Line coach after spending his last 6 season w/Seahawks as Def. Asst, asst. D-Line & asst LB coach & scout

  • In reply to jbenton:

    http://assets.espn.go.com/espnradiostations/i/chicago/lovechild/peggykusinski.jpg

  • In reply to Crowned:

    lmao

  • In reply to Crowned:

    what the fuck is it with us taking people from only inferior teams!?

    Bucks and now all these seahawks people. Jesus... how about getting some personnel from NE, Pitt, Ravens, etc...? For fuck sake!

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    b/c they're not letting them go.

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    you caught me off guard FQ.

    Yeah, that's probably 100% true, still trying to figue out why they all come from the bottom feeders though right? How about some top tier, but not the best people? How about just making it LOOK like they're trying to get the best? Just sayin man.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    TIM RUSKELL

  • In reply to hollywood1:

    Bingo.

    My worst fears are confirmed. We're slowly turning into the Seahawks. What's next? We're gonna trade a first rounder for Blackhurst?

  • In reply to DocNitty34:

    The Seahawks have made the playoffs 6 times in the last decade Doc. The Bears have only made the playoffs 4 times in the same time span.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    Trac, you're killing me (and yourself) with these selective stats lately.

    And the Seahawks are in the AFCW... perennially the worst and weakest division in the NFL...

    Apples to camels Trac.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    The NFL is as incestuous an organization as they come MB. Just pointing out that a lot of the time it doesn't matter where a coach comes from. Look at McDummaels.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    meh, not buying it. Read that article about the steelers up top again. If you want to be like the Broncos or the browns, that's a fine strategy.

    I'd rather be like the steelers and NE, but this is all a sad broken record. We have NE dreams, steelers aspirations, but broncos/browns/cinci level management.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    You wait till the guy you wants becomes available. I just don't get it why you think you can just sign anyone you want to. I understand what you're saying. Want in one hand and reality in another though. I guess I'm just being realistic MB.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Oh Prince Albert....

    http://voices.washingtonpost.com/crime-scene/tom-jackman/albert-haynesworth-charged-in.html

  • In reply to gpldan:

    And THAT'S why a Cancer like him doesn't need to be within a 1000 miles of Halas Hall. Some guys never learn and I'm pretty certain, neither will he.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    That's ok. Let him keep getting devaluing himself. Maybe we can get him for a 6 or 7th rounder by the time it's done. It's not like the dude's running a meth lab. He got pissed off in traffic. Who among us hasn't wanted to get out of the car to smack a smug driver around. What keeps most of us from doing it? Not morals. It's the fear of being arrested and paying fines for it. He doesn't have the worry about the fines or the lawyer fees. I'd still take him in the middle of our defense, troubled or not.

  • In reply to jbenton:

    Count me in the them group Jab.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Picture flicking somoene off in traffic, and Albert 400lb fucking hainsworth comes waddling out of the car. I'd shit myself for sure.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    YIKES! I ride my bicycle to work all year. When I'm downtown only the cabbies and bus drivers buzz me. When I lived in Iowa I used to get buzzed and yelled at all the time. People get all tough when they are in their vehicles. Once the reality of the situation hits them, it's either fight or flight. Big Albert would certainly induce a large steamer in my shorts if I thought he was going to smite me mightily.

  • In reply to MASOCHR:

    " A poor effort might have some calling him a quarterback who stacks his numbers against inferior opponents. And by "some" I mean "me". "

    I'd love to hear your thoughts on Jay Cutler if you basically think Aaron Rodgers is overrated and only good against inferior opponents.

    Keep trying to diminish the growing legend of Aaron Rodgers. It only makes you look that much more foolish and uninformed.

    You should listen to Trac, he is closer to the truth than you could ever imagine being. Seriously.

    Sincerely,

    January 23rd 2011

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    The Steelers have more superbowl experience in their kicker's left nut than the Packers have combined on their whole team. Steelers will win by double digis and I agree w/ Jeff that Mendenhall will be MVP. Some here thought he was overated, but that guy is a beast.

  • In reply to ImissButkus:

    Forgive the lack of stars in my eyes.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Hey MB, did you say something about injuries? I hope we don't get any like these.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5K1AKynKwUA&feature=related

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    They Got Marinelli? considered one of the Best Dlineman coaches. Went out and Got Martz and Tice also.

  • In reply to Grizzly559:

    Fres, how soon you forget... they were the last ditch chance. They were the only ones who would take the jobs man. We looked for others and no one wanted the gig.

    It turned out well (mostly) for us, but they were for the most part desperation moves... except maybe tice. Mari was a first time DC, and who knew if all three would be able to work together in the same room with such huge heads.

    I'll use this opty to get on my O soapbox

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    +1

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