The number seven is Steeler Nation‘s new favorite numeral. When the clock strikes midnight on Sunday (making it officially February 7th), number seven Ben Roethlisberger, in his seventh professional season, will have led the Pittsburgh Steelers to an unprecedented seventh Super Bowl championship.
In the spirit of good sportsmanship, I reached out to Monty over at the excellent Green Bay Packers website Total Packers.Com. Naturally, we agreed to exchange seven questions in anticipation of Super Bowl XLV. My questions are in the little gray box with the quote marks, his answers in Green Bay Green.
Your team has impressive wins over many quality teams this season but they also lost to the Patriots as well as the lowly Lions and Redskins. Any common threads we can take from those losses?
The common thread in the Patriots and Lions losses is the Packers were without Aaron Rodgers.
Last year, I know your offensive line was leakier than a computer at the Pentagon. How would you evaluate their performance this year?
The line gets a lot of credit for protecting Aaron Rodgers this season and rightfully so.
Overall, the Packers offensive line isn’t terrible, but they are below average. Rodgers’ ability and Mike McCarthy’s play calling disguise their deficiencies.
Relatedly, Rodgers got smacked around like Charlie Sheen and a hotel room full of hookers. A-Rod also missed some time this season. Talk about his health and ability to play through injuries.
At this point, there’s no reason to believe he’s not 100 percent and I expect they’ll have to scrape him off the field with a shovel for him not to finish the Super Bowl. After all, we’re not talking about Jay Cutler here.
We know about your big three of Rodgers, Driver, and Jennings. If one lesser known offensive player was going to surprise us in the Super Bowl, who would it be?
As a No. 3 receiver, Jones can beat any nickel back in the league and as a No. 4, Nelson can beat any dime back. Both have the speed to break the big play and they’re playing in conditions that give them a big advantage over defenders.
In a similar vein, we know about Cheesehead Fabio (Clay Matthews), Charles Woodson, and BJ Raji. Who could be a surprise hero on defense?
Speaking of the D, how is Woodson still playing at such a high level at that age? I’d have to think Bruce Arians would like to get him matched up with Mike Wallace at some point.
Obligatory prediction for the game:
Everything being equal, the Packers spread the Steelers out like the New England Patriots did during the regular season and win handily. Of course, everything isn’t equal. These Steelers have been to the Super Bowl before. These Packers haven’t. I don’t expect a Mike McCarthy team to get distracted, but experience counts for something — or so the media keeps telling me.
Packers 28, Steelers 20
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