Could The Steelers Take Down The Packers?

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If we replayed the game with a healthy team on both sides, who comes out on top? Image courtesy steelers.com

 

Ok so it’s the bye week and there is no upcoming game to chat about.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little fun.  This year’s Green Bay team remains the only unbeaten team and they look pretty unbeatable as well.  The question I ask you Steeler Nation is, if we replayed Super Bowl XLV this year with a healthy team on both sides, could we take them?

What’s the best way to break down the outcome of a game that hasn’t taken place and might not happen?  Leaves me with quite a lot of room to exaggerate so that’s good for me.  Let’s take a look at the strengths and weaknesses for each team and see who comes out on top.  There’s no looking back to last season or the Super Bowl.  Just what each team has either done or not done so far this season will determine the probable winner.  Keep in mind that I’m totally and unapologetically biased towards the Steelers.

Packers Strengths:

These guys can score like nobody’s business.  They are ranked 1st in points scored, 4th in offensive yards, and 3rd in passing yards.  Aaron Rogers leads the league in touchdowns and is just about even with Ben Roethlisberger in passing yards.  Did I say that right?  Yes I did.  Rogers has 2,869 passing yards after playing 9 games and Ben has 2,877 after 10 games.  One thing Rogers has over Ben is accuracy.  Rogers is completing nearly 75% of his passes which is a scary number.  To put it in perspective, let’s just take another random quarterback out of nowhere, say Joe Flacco.  Mr. Unibrow is completing just about 55% of his passes.  Staggering isn’t it?  Ok back on topic.  The Packers offense is scary.  They might not run the ball all over the place, ranking 21st in rushing, but Rogers has found his rhythm and is being hyped like he’s an Uggs model or something.  The NFL has turned into a pass-happy league and the Packers are sure taking advantage.

One thing the Packers also have going for them is the drive.  It seems silly and isn’t a measurable statistic but there is a clear pattern for Super Bowl teams on either side of the Lombardi trophy to not do so great the following season.  It’s very difficult to repeat as Super Bowl Champions, almost impossible in today’s NFL where anything can happen any week of the season.  The Packers have 15 players on their roster this year that were on IR for last year’s Super Bowl run.  That’s a whole lot of players that feel like they want to earn that bling they are walking around with.  The Packers also have the advantage of veterans.  None of the key players or coaches is new to the system and is trying to learn anything.  These guys are executing plays they know by heart and they are executing them well.

I'll take the Steelers defense any day of the week and twice on Sundays. Image courtesy steelers.com

I’ll go ahead and pay respect to Lambeau Field and offer that as a strength for the Packers.  With all due respect to the football gods that place is a land mark.  Those crazy Packer fans love putting cheese-like things on their heads and shiver in the snow for their team.  One could argue that home field advantage is an advantage for any team but there are a select few that take it to another level and Green Bay is one of those teams.  If this imaginary game had to be played in Wisconsin instead of a neutral site, the Steelers would be in trouble.

Packers Weaknesses:  

The Packers have one glaring weakness to their perfect season they have going so far.  Their defense is seriously suspect.  I’m not giving into the talk that they’ve turned the tide just because they hammered the lowly Vikings on MNF.  The Packers rank 31st in defending the pass and 28th in yards allowed.  They haven’t come across a defense that could stop their offensive attack so that’s why those rankings can be tied to a 9-0 team.  In all fairness the Pack are 8th in stopping the run and 13th in points allowed but if you average almost 390 yards on you in a game, you’re bound to lose eventually.  Keep in mind though that these rankings already have the Vikings game averaged in.  The defense is the Packers major weakness.  The Steelers proved against the Patriots that they can expose a faulty pass defense and I would bet it would be the same outcome here.

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  • ToddWilliams

    Good article, Kimmy. The thought of another Super Bowl against the Packers does make me a little nervous, too…although I think this year we could take them, especially since our offense and defense appear to have tightened up a bit. It could be dangerous for the Packers to not have a loss or two before the postseason…they may not discover how to patch up their weaknesses before it’s too late.

    I may be wrong, but it feels like this Super Bowl is almost definitely going to be the Packers from the NFC…with the Steelers or Patriots from the AFC.

  • craig.gottschalk

    @ToddWilliams Don’t say your nervous. It looks bad! Seriously, would you want a championship win to come off a team in which it was easy or not a sure thing? That’s the fun of it and that is something that helps validate the experience. If the Steelers played last year’s Seahawks and won, so many out there would say that it was too easy of a win and makes that SB win less significant. I say bring on whomever – if the Steelers are really a SB team and SB champions, then they will beat anyone in that game or leading up to it.

    I think it’s going to be Pack vs 49′ers in the NFC and Steelers vs. Texans in the AFC. It’s anyone of those four in the SB this year…. then again I’m not good at predictions…. which is why I never go to Vegas.

  • ToddWilliams

    Good article, Kimmy. The thought of another Super Bowl against the Packers does make me a little nervous, too…although I think this year we could take them, especially since our offense and defense appear to have tightened up a bit. It could be dangerous for the Packers to not have a loss or two before the postseason…they may not discover how to patch up their weaknesses before it’s too late.

    I may be wrong, but it feels like this Super Bowl is almost definitely going to be the Packers from the NFC…with the Steelers or Patriots from the AFC.

  • craig.gottschalk

    @ToddWilliams Don’t say your nervous. It looks bad! Seriously, would you want a championship win to come off a team in which it was easy or not a sure thing? That’s the fun of it and that is something that helps validate the experience. If the Steelers played last year’s Seahawks and won, so many out there would say that it was too easy of a win and makes that SB win less significant. I say bring on whomever – if the Steelers are really a SB team and SB champions, then they will beat anyone in that game or leading up to it.

    I think it’s going to be Pack vs 49′ers in the NFC and Steelers vs. Texans in the AFC. It’s anyone of those four in the SB this year…. then again I’m not good at predictions…. which is why I never go to Vegas.

  • lab552

    It’s spelled RODGERS. With all the attention to the Packers and their perfect season so far, one would think you would know how to spell the best quarterback in the leagues’ name. They are currently ranked 13th in total defense right now and getting better. Let’s see if the Steelers will get into the BIG game.

  • craig.gottschalk

    @lab552 Eggscuse uz fer our bahd shpeling. We’ll see how much ‘better’ that defense gets. Please oh please tell us where you are getting that 13th in total defense – unless it’s just your swagger coming up with that stat.

  • Kimmy

    @craig.gottschalk @lab552 I honestly can’t believe I misspelled Rodgers throughout the whole article lol. But seriously 13th ranked defense? That’s even funnier!

  • lab552

    It’s spelled RODGERS. With all the attention to the Packers and their perfect season so far, one would think you would know how to spell the best quarterback in the leagues’ name. They are currently ranked 13th in total defense right now and getting better. Let’s see if the Steelers will get into the BIG game.

  • craig.gottschalk

    @lab552 Eggscuse uz fer our bahd shpeling. We’ll see how much ‘better’ that defense gets. Please oh please tell us where you are getting that 13th in total defense – unless it’s just your swagger coming up with that stat.

  • JennMT

    Rodgers Smodgers!! GO STEELERNATION!! :)

  • Kimmy

    @craig.gottschalk @lab552 I honestly can’t believe I misspelled Rodgers throughout the whole article lol. But seriously 13th ranked defense? That’s even funnier!

  • JennMT

    Rodgers Smodgers!! GO STEELERNATION!! :)

  • lab552

    @craig.gottschalk Accorrding to S.I.’s G.B. Packer home page, The Packers are ranked as N.F.L.’s 13th ranked defense. Check it out for yourself. Swagger…….. why not? Can we say, undefeated Craig?

  • lab552

    @JennMT Jealous much Jenn? I guess we’ll see how the season plays out! Good luck Black & Gold from the Green & Gold!!!

  • kwkraft.spam

    Do you think a Leinart led team is going to make it to the AFC championship over the Patriots and Ravens?

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  • craig.gottschalk

    @lab552 We’ll see if the ’72 Miami Dolphins will be drinking champaign again this season….

  • lab552

    @craig.gottschalk Accorrding to S.I.’s G.B. Packer home page, The Packers are ranked as N.F.L.’s 13th ranked defense. Check it out for yourself. Swagger…….. why not? Can we say, undefeated Craig?

  • lab552

    @JennMT Jealous much Jenn? I guess we’ll see how the season plays out! Good luck Black & Gold from the Green & Gold!!!

  • kwkraft.spam

    Do you think a Leinart led team is going to make it to the AFC championship over the Patriots and Ravens?

  • lab552

    @kwkraft.spam If the Texans uses the passing game only if they have to, then Houston has a good chance. Their defense is pretty darn good .

  • craig.gottschalk

    @lab552 We’ll see if the ’72 Miami Dolphins will be drinking champaign again this season….

  • lab552

    @kwkraft.spam If the Texans uses the passing game only if they have to, then Houston has a good chance. Their defense is pretty darn good .

  • Kimmy

    @lab552 @craig.gottschalk SI’s page ranks the defense by the points allowed category. Check out passing yards allowed and total yards allowed. You will find your Packers towards the very bottom of both of those lists.

  • JennMT

    @lab552 I’m not quite sure what you think I personally am jealous of, I myself have no aspirations of being a NFL QB, but whatevs :) Thank you from the Black & Gold, but when I think of Green & Gold I think of the Penn Trafford Warriors!! :)

  • DomDiTolla

    Great article as always Kim. Way to stir the pot and think “what if…” in the process. Personally, I think this would be a great matchup again. As long as the Steelers can not allow the Packers to get out of the proverbial “blocks” quick and to a big lead, the Steelers’ Offense could essentially do to the Packers’ D what they did to New England’s. Capers’ Defense has tons of elements as LeBeau’s, and Green Bay’s secondary (despite they are coached by my favorite player as a kid: Darren Perry) is vulnerable if the pass-rush is neutralized. The whole WR Corps is even more loaded than last season, and with the Packers spread out, Mendy. and Redman could face boxes with 6 or less guys.

    But as everybody knows, Rodgers is hot, and is lighting up the scoreboard. Maybe the Steelers could have an edge with Clifton being sidelined, but the Packers’ WR’s did drop a lot of passes in Super Bowl XLV and the margin of victory could have been a lot more.

    One thing I am sure of is the fact that both fanbases want to see this matchup again.

  • Kimmy

    @lab552 @craig.gottschalk SI’s page ranks the defense by the points allowed category. Check out passing yards allowed and total yards allowed. You will find your Packers towards the very bottom of both of those lists.

  • JennMT

    @lab552 I’m not quite sure what you think I personally am jealous of, I myself have no aspirations of being a NFL QB, but whatevs :) Thank you from the Black & Gold, but when I think of Green & Gold I think of the Penn Trafford Warriors!! :)

  • DomDiTolla

    Great article as always Kim. Way to stir the pot and think “what if…” in the process. Personally, I think this would be a great matchup again. As long as the Steelers can not allow the Packers to get out of the proverbial “blocks” quick and to a big lead, the Steelers’ Offense could essentially do to the Packers’ D what they did to New England’s. Capers’ Defense has tons of elements as LeBeau’s, and Green Bay’s secondary (despite they are coached by my favorite player as a kid: Darren Perry) is vulnerable if the pass-rush is neutralized. The whole WR Corps is even more loaded than last season, and with the Packers spread out, Mendy. and Redman could face boxes with 6 or less guys.

    But as everybody knows, Rodgers is hot, and is lighting up the scoreboard. Maybe the Steelers could have an edge with Clifton being sidelined, but the Packers’ WR’s did drop a lot of passes in Super Bowl XLV and the margin of victory could have been a lot more.

    One thing I am sure of is the fact that both fanbases want to see this matchup again.

  • lab552

    My bad,failed to do my homework!! @Kimmy @craig.gottschalk

  • lab552

    Are you still feeling the disappointment from last years’ Super Bowl? Sorry, not familiar with the Warriors. @JennMT

  • lab552

    My bad,failed to do my homework!! @Kimmy @craig.gottschalk

  • lab552

    Are you still feeling the disappointment from last years’ Super Bowl? Sorry, not familiar with the Warriors. @JennMT

  • Kimmy

    @DomDiTolla Thanks Dom! You know how much I like to stir the pot LOL. The Steelers clearly have the tools to take down the Packers, it would all come down to execution. What a great game it would be. Remember the Steelers O-line didn’t have Starks or Pouncey in the Super Bowl as well.

  • JennMT

    I think it is a great artcile too, don’t you cowhercbs ?

  • Kimmy

    @DomDiTolla Thanks Dom! You know how much I like to stir the pot LOL. The Steelers clearly have the tools to take down the Packers, it would all come down to execution. What a great game it would be. Remember the Steelers O-line didn’t have Starks or Pouncey in the Super Bowl as well.

  • JennMT

    I think it is a great artcile too, don’t you cowhercbs ?