Packers-Steelers Super Bowl XLV Breakdown: QB, RB Advantages
With just six days remaining until Super Bowl XLV, it’s time to start comparing both teams to see where advantage lie on the rosters. The Pittsburgh Steelers come into the Super Bowl after taking down the Baltimore Ravens and New York Jets as the AFC’s No. 2 seed. They used a balanced attack on offense and a swarming defense to get where they are, as they look for their third Super Bowl title in the last six seasons under head coach Mike Tomlin.
Answering for the NFC are the Green Bay Packers, who enter the Super Bowl as the hotter of the two teams. Road wins over the Eagles, Falcons, and Bears as the No. 6 seed has proved they can play with anyone. That’s exactly what Mike McCarthy and the Packers will have to do when they face Pittsburgh. Just two players have Super Bowl experience, Charles Woodson and Ryan Pickett, while John Kuhn holds the lone S.B. ring, when he was a practice squad member with the Steelers back in 2005.
Here’s a comparison breakdown of each offensive position and which team will hold the edge come Super Bowl Sunday. Teams will either have a neutral edge, a slight edge, or a substantial edge.
Quarterback: Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger vs. Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers
One of the biggest themes over the past week has been the experience factor, and how the Steelers blow the Packers out of the water in that department. While that may or may not be the case, it’s surely worth noting at this position. The fact is Roethlisberger has been on this stage, the biggest in all of football, twice in his career, something few quarterbacks can put on their resume. Rodgers, on the other hand, has played just four playoff games.
While nothing can compare to playing in the Super Bowl, the fact that all four of Rodgers’ playoff games have been on the road gives some hope that he won’t miss a beat come Sunday. Rodgers has been surgical this post-season and will have a nice, fast, warm dome to play under in Dallas, so those elements won’t factor into his play. There may be a jitter or two from the Packers’ signal caller to begin the game, but expect Rodgers to come through Sunday like he has all season.
At the same time, experience isn’t the only thing Roethlisberger has going for him. He’s one of the elite quarterbacks in the league, is near-impossible to take down in the pocket, and excels running to his right outside the pocket. A balanced run game and three legitimate receivers (to go with the experience) gives him the slight edge over Rodgers, but this is about as close to neutral without being neutral as possible.
Running Backs: Pittsburgh’s Rashard Mendenhall and Issac Redman vs. Green Bay’s James Starks and Brandon Jackson
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