It’s 12 hours after the game ended, and I finally feel up to typing an article in response to last night’s game.
Yes, I’m a writer, and I’m supposed to be prompt in recapping Steelers games. But the reality is that I’m a fan too, and I take it hard when the Steelers lose. Especially when they lose the Super Bowl.
But now that I’ve had time to mourn, I’m back at the keyboard.
First of all, I have to congratulate the Green Bay Packers. They won the Super Bowl and are now the NFL Champions. Steelers fans know what that feels like, and we can appreciate how proud the fans in Green Bay feel right now.
Frankly, I’m amazed that the Packers were able to do what they did with all of the injuries that they’ve suffered during the season. They had 13 players on injured reserve, and then they lost Charles Woodson and Donald Driver during the game. If I were a Packers’ fan, I’d be ecstatic about that team’s potential next year when they get all of those injured players back.
As for the Steelers, they have nobody to blame but themselves. Ordinarily, if a team dominates the time of possession clock by a full 8 minutes, that team is usually going to win. Moreover, if a team rushes for 126 yards, while holding their opponent to 50 net rushing yards, you’d probably guess that they won the game.
But the most costly thing in the NFL is turnovers, and the Steelers made 3 of them. I said in my pregame analysis that these two teams were very evenly matched, and that the team that won the turnover battle would probably win the game. The Steelers turned the ball over 3 times, and the Packers scored on each of those turnovers. That was basically the story of the game.
The Steelers made a valiant comeback, and had an opportunity to win the game in the final 2 minutes. But despite all of the big comebacks we’ve seen Ben Roethlisberger orchestrate over the years, he couldn’t work his magic against the packers’ defense. The Steelers failed to drive the ball down the field, and the Packers won the game.
Like the Packers, the Steelers have reason for optimism. Their offensive line was decimated by injuries, yet they successfully ran the ball against the Packer in the Super Bowl, and against the New York Jets in the AFC Championship game. When they get Willie Colon, Max Starks, and Maurkice Pouncey back next year, they should be even better.
The Steelers also have to be optimistic about their young receivers. Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown will be experienced veterans next year, and Limas Sweed will be coming off of injured reserve and will compete for playing time.
Hopefully, the Steelers will get a talented cornerback (or two) in the draft. If they do, the team will be even stronger next year than they are this year.
So congratulations Packers. You won this time. But we’ll see you next year.
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