Tag:Super Bowl XLV
Posted on: February 6, 2011 10:12 pm
Edited on: February 7, 2011 2:22 am
 

Rodgers leads Packers to Super Bowl win

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

DALLAS – The Super Bowl experience of the Steelers didn’t matter a bit to the Packers. Neither did Ben Roethlisberger’s toughness, the Pittsburgh defense’s resolve or Brett Keisel’s beard.

Green Bay wasn’t fazed by its youth, its receivers’ inability to make relatively easy catches, or the fact EVERYBODY seemed to pick the Packers to win this game (usually meaning the Steelers would run right over Green Bay). Hell, Green Bay wasn’t even fazed by the furious comeback(s) by Pittsburgh after the Packers took an 18-point lead in the second quarter.

None of it mattered.

Not when Aaron Rodgers, playing in the biggest game of his life, refused to be intimidated by a Steelers offense that never stopped scoring points and narrowing the lead he had built in the first half. Not when he led Green Bay to a 31-25 win.



The biggest drive in the biggest game of his life came after the Steelers cut the lead to 28-25 with 7:34 to play. He was sacked on first down, and on third down, LG Daryn Colledge was called for a false start penalty to make it third and 10. Rodgers’ response: a 31-yard laser to Greg Jennings for the first down to keep the clock running.

Later in the drive, he hit James Jones for a 21-yard pass, and the Packers eventually kicked the field goal. It wasn’t exactly what Rodgers (who finished 24 of 39 for 304 yards and three touchdowns) wanted, but it gave Green Bay some breathing room. Which, it turned out, was all they needed.

Despite an iffy second half on offense and despite the fact the Packers defense clearly was impacted by the loss of CB Charles Woodson, who suffered a shoulder injury in the first half, Green Bay managed to win its first Super Bowl since the 1996 season, returning the Lombardi Trophy to the town that Lombardi put on the map.

After grabbing a 21-3 lead in the second quarter following a Jordy Nelson touchdown catch, a Nick Collins 37-yard interception return and a Jennings touchdown pass, the Packers seemed in control of the game. No, it didn’t just seem like it. The Packers WERE in control of the game.

But the Steelers made an important score late in the second quarter when WR Hines Ward caught an eight-yard touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger to cut the lead to 11 before halftime.

Despite an extra-long halftime – an intermission show, mind you, that not even Slash could save – Green Bay couldn’t retake the game’s momentum.

The Steelers forced Green Bay to punt on the first drive of the second half, and five plays later, Steelers RB Rashard Mendenhall completed the five-play, 50-yard drive with an eight-yard scoring run. The fact Green Bay didn’t gain a first down in the third quarter and the fact the Packers receivers couldn’t handle Rodgers’ passes didn’t bode well going into the last 15 minutes.

Until the beginning of the fourth quarter, that is, when Clay Matthews and Ryan Pickett forced a fumble from Mendenhall to take possession at the Packers 45-yard line. And despite another terrible drop from Nelson, he redeemed himself with a 38-yard catch on a third down to keep the drive going.

After a Rodgers sack, he found Jennings, who had dominated Troy Polamalu on the route, in the corner of the end zone for the eight-yard score and the 11-point lead.

Rodgers, entering the postseason, had never won a playoff game. Now he’s won a Super Bowl. He might not be the best quarterback in the league. But he’s pretty damn close. And now he’s an NFL champion.

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Posted on: February 6, 2011 8:26 pm
 

Super Bowl XLV halftime analysis

B. Roethlisberger throws an interception in the first quarter of Super Bowl XLV (US Presswire).

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

DALLAS – Through the first 25 minutes, it seemed like the Packers were going to walk out of Cowboys Stadium and Super Bowl XLV with an easy – and surprising – blowout win against the Steelers.

Considering Green Bay had only been a slight favorite and considering people had been talking about how this easily was a game that could go into overtime, this was a relatively stunning turn of events.

That, of course, is what happens when Green Bay strode to a 21-3 lead, based on Aaron Rodgers’ brilliance (11 of 16 for 137 yards, two touchdowns and a passer rating of 134.6), a little dose of RB James Starks (seven carries for 37 yards) and a tough defense that has forced two turnovers while scoring a touchdown of its own.

But Pittsburgh has a reason to hope now – thanks to a seven-play, 77-yard drive late in the second quarter that ended with an eight-yard touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger to WR Hines Ward.

Now, it’s a 21-10 game, and though the Packers get the ball to open the second half, the Steelers have a little momentum.

We still might get that close game just about everybody originally expected after all.

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Posted on: February 6, 2011 8:00 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2011 8:46 pm
 

Woodson injures shoulder, won't return

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

UPDATE (8:29 p.m.): OK, here's where we stand with the injuries.

Packers CB Charles Woodson has a collarbone injury, and he's out for the game.

CB Sam Shields, Woodson's backup, will return though he has a shoulder injury. Donald Driver (ankle) is supposed to return, but he wasn't on the field for the Packers first drive of the second half. FS Nick Collins returned to the locker room just before halftime to receive IV fluids.

For the Steelers, WR Emmanuel Sanders, bothered by a foot injury, is out for the game, though that loss doesn't hurt nearly as bad as the loss of Woodson.

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DALLAS – Now, it’s 2-2.

The Steelers have lost two players so far today (though Flozell Adams’ shoulder injury was temporary), and after standout Packers CB Charles Woodson returned to the locker room late in the second half, Green Bay is missing a pair of players as well.

Woodson injured himself while covering Mike Wallace on a sideline route. Woodson looked good, running step-for-step with the speedy Wallace, but as he dove to try to break up the Ben Roethlisberger pass, he landed hard on his left shoulder.

The Packers had to call time out, and soon after, Woodson walked up the ramp to the locker room.

UPDATE (7:58 p.m.):
Packers S Nick Collins also has gone back to the locker room early before halftime.

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Posted on: February 6, 2011 7:37 pm
 

Steelers, Packers lose WRs

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

DALLAS – Steelers WR Emmanuel Sanders has been taken to the locker room on a cart after injuring his foot early in the second quarter, and he’s questionable to return. Meanwhile, on the other side of the field, Packers WR Donald Driver has limped to the locker room with a knee injury.

So far, Sanders is the leading receiver for Pittsburgh with two catches for 17 yards, and he’s had to limp to the sideline at least twice because of his foot. Driver has two catches for 28 yards.

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Posted on: February 6, 2011 5:53 pm
 

Inactives for Super Bowl XLV

Posted by Andy Benoit

Steelers:
QB Charlie Batch (emergency quarterback)
RB Jonathan Dwyer
CB Crezdon Butler
OT Chris Scott
DT Steve McLendon
C/G Dorian Brooks
DE Aaron Smith
LB Jason Worilds

No surpirses overall.

Packers:
QB Graham Harrell (emergency QB)
RB Dimitri Nance
CB Brandon Underwood
CB Josh Gordy
FB Quinn Johnson
C/G Evan Dietrich-Smith
C/G Nick McDonald
OLB Erik Walden

Walden, a starter with three sacks the last four games, has a high ankle sprain. He’ll be replaced by Frank Zombo. Zombo won’t win any games for you, but e won’t lose any either.

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Posted on: February 6, 2011 5:20 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2011 7:29 pm
 

Conflicting reports on number of seat shortages

Posted by Andy Benoit

UPDATE (7:28 p.m.):
The latest from the NFL:

NFL UPDATE ON TEMPORARY SEATS 

The 400 fans in sections 425A and 430A that were not able to be accommodated with seats were taken inside the stadium to watch the game on monitors in the North Field Club behind the Pittsburgh bench. They also had the option of viewing the game from standing room platforms in each corner of the stadium. In addition, these fans will each receive a refund of triple the cost of the face value of their ticket. The face value of these tickets is $800.

We regret the situation and apologize for the inconvenience it caused. We will conduct a full review of this matter.

 
How did the NFL relocate the approximately 850 fans who were affected?

We routinely hold back tickets in the event problems may arise. In addition, the Cowboys and the NFL returned tickets.

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UPDATE 4:35 p.m. EST: The NFL has said that only 400 fans will not be accommodated for Super Bowl XLV. 850 fans were moved to similar or better seats. The fans who did not get in received $2,700 each.

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DALLAS -- There are conflicting reports, but it’s possible that seat shortage at Cowboys Stadium is a much, MUCH bigger deal than originally indicated. FOX says less than 1,000 fans have been affected by the seat shortage. However, KXAS of Dallas-Fort Worth says 6,000 to 9,000 fans won’t have seats because the temporary sections were not approved by the fire department.

An official number will be known at some point. We’ll pass it along when it comes out.

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Category: NFL
Posted on: February 6, 2011 4:49 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2011 4:51 pm
 

Cowboys Stadium short on seats for Super Bowl

Posted by Andy Benoit

DALLAS -- A public relations official just came by in Section 327 at Cowboys Stadium leaving memos on a seat that reads:

There are a limited number of sections in temporary seating areas inside the stadium that have not been fully completed. We are working to resolve the matter and expect that by game time most of the fans affected will have been accommodated in their seats or relocated to similar or better seats.

Those fans that are affected by this will be directed to the Party Plaza area while the matter is resolved.
Fans who are not accommodated with seats inside the stadium will each receive a refund of triple the cost of the face value of their ticket.

We regret the situation.


Triple the cost of the ticket is nice, but with scalping and online ticket brokers these days, it’s possible that some of the affected fans paid more than triple face value in the first place. There are going to be some extremely angry and disappointed people at Cowboys Stadium this evening.

We asked the PR rep what the mood is on the situation. He smiled and said "No comment."

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Category: NFL
Posted on: February 6, 2011 12:40 pm
 

Why GB DE Jarius Wynn spent night in hospital

Posted by Andy Benoit

Talk about a big day. Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that Packers backup defensive end Jarius Wynn spent last night with his wife in the hospital as the couple welcomed their first child into the world. Schefter’s report can be presumed 100 percent accurate given that he provided a photo.

The Wynn’s are considering giving the baby a middle name of “Super”, depending on what happens tonight.

J. Wynn (US Presswire)

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