When the Packers settled for a field goal and a six point lead on their final drive in yesterday’s Super Bowl, I thought they had just lost the game. There were two minutes and seven seconds left. Plenty of time for Ben Roethlisberger to pull out yet another victory from an otherwise sloppy performance. It was becoming his trademark. He had put up a 35.5 QB rating against the Jets, yet somehow won the game. Here we go again.
Then a strange thing happened. Destiny’s Child fell on his face. A quick first down pass, then a four and out fizzle. It reminded me of Brett Farve going four and out against the Broncos in 1998. Farve at least got his team into scoring territory before kerplunking. Roethlisberger died on his own side of the fifty.
When a game ends with a TD pass, the reaction is always, “Wow. They won it!” But when it ends with a defensive stop, it’s like a popped balloon. “Wait a minute. The game’s over? Just like that? Wow.”
But it was a karmic and fitting end to a clumsy game and a clumsy week in Texas. And yet another QB with his sights set on scaling Mount Montana fell to the earth in pedestrian and ordinary fashion. Ha ha ha. Eat it, Ben. You’re just another unindicted serial rapist in the crowd now. You can change your last name to Hamberger. You’ll never win another big game in your whole career. You know you can fail now. You know it, your team knows it, and your fans know it. You will never overcome the doubt that has been placed within. Get in the Tom Brady/Peyton Manning line. The one reserved for mortals.
The Packers did to Roethlisberger what teams did to neuter Troy Smith this past year — kept him in the pocket. Roethlisberger has always thrived on escaping mayhem, rolling outside, and throwing a bomb. The only escape for him yesterday was lumbering up the middle. Good yardage, but not lethal. In the end, he had nowhere to run.
The 400 people who paid to see the game and got stiffed out of their seats must feel like the unluckiest bums on the face of the earth. 103,000 fans got in, and you were one of 400 who didn’t. A week for their dreams turned out to be a nightmare week. Don’t get near these unlucky folks. They are bad juju carriers. Highly contagious.
Neither offense had any rhythm in the game. I suppose this was due to the quality of the two defenses. But it made the game kind of blotchy. The Steelers seemed to have the superior team, but they kept turning the ball over. The Packers kept dropping passes. It was not a showcase game with any stunning and dramatic plays. Troy Polamalu, Defensive Player of the Year, got beat like a Niner DB for an embarrassingly easy TD. Not once, but twice!
All in all, a bit of a yawner, as SBs go. The lead up to the game was boring, with a lumberjack face making the biggest stir. The news maker of the week was the weather! Sheesh. Jerry Jones’ monolithic tomb got nothing but negative press (tee hee). When you start having your life threatened by falling roof top ice, you have entered the Hollywood Zone. Or the Gods of Football Wrath Zone. Take your pick.
The highlight of the game for me occurred in the first quarter, when Nick Collins intercepted Roethlisberger and jaunted into the end zone for a pick six. That wasn’t the surprise, though. No, the surprise came when he was flagged for an illegal end zone celebration. From behind me in the living room, a voice screamed, “What’s that idiot doing! He should be benched and fined! That is soooo stupid!”
It was Skeebette. She was actually watching the game! It must have been our new HD TV. It lured her in. Ha ha ha. She had just experienced her first football moment. It’s in her blood now. There is no turning back.