February 5, 2011

A great Super pick

by Dan Bilicki In: Football, Picks

It may have taken two long, agonizing weeks and one long, agonizing Pro Bowl, but we’re finally here at the Super Bowl. Yes, quite possibly the last pro football game we’re watching for a long time – because CFL, UFL and when USC plays don’t count.

We have two of the best defensive teams in the league, one offensive juggernaut, the most clutch QB of his generation and two teams that have defied a heap of injuries each to get here.

These two teams Pittsburgh and Green Bay ranked second and fifth, respectively, in defensive yardage and first and second, again respectively, in points allowed. Steelers safety Troy Polamalu won the defensive player of the year award while Packers linebacker finished in second, trailing by a mere two votes. Both of these sides are going to be amped up to play, so why are so many pundits calling for a shootout of sorts?

Probably because this game is being played on a fast track inside of Cowboys Stadium – with the roof closed to shield the players from that nasty Texas weather we’ve heard oh so much about.

You can’t forget that these two QBs are among the best in the league, too. Aaron Rodgers and Ben Roethlisberger aren’t your conventional, Mike Vick-type running threats, but both can take off and get you a first down when needed.

While Green Bay’s receiver core is touted as one of the best and deepest in the league, you can’t forget about the Steelers’ wide outs. Mike Wallace is turning into one of the best deep threats in the league while Hines Ward has already captured a Super Bowl MVP award. Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders have both made some big plays in the playoffs too and should draw some attention.

But the real difference in the Super Bowl will come down to the running game. Green Bay has gotten a great effort out of Max Starks in the post-season, but he’s not a real threat to break a big run. Neither is Brandon Jackson or fullback John Kuhn. It seems like the Packers have little chance at moving the ball on the ground against the Steelers and that could cause a lot of problems, especially if the Pack are trying to hold a late lead.

The Steelers on the other hand, have Rashard Mendenhall. He may have had a season below expectations, but was superb against the tough Jets defence last week and seems to be peaking at the right time. Pittsburgh’s offensive line may be riddled with injuries, but those subs stood up just fine two weeks ago against Rex Ryan’s attackers.

Pick: Steelers +3 over Packers
Final score: 27-21.
MVP: Rashard Mendenhall.
Times the word “lockout” is mentioned during the game (not including halftime): Under 1.5.
Times the words “Brett Favre” are mentioned: Over 1.5.

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