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Pittsburgh 27, Arizona 23: Random Postgame Ramblings

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Ben Roethlisberger can sleep well tonight.  Big Ben led the Steelers 75 yards for the Super Bowl-winning TD in their NFL-best 6th Super Bowl victory over the Arizona Cardinals 27-23.  3 years ago, Big Ben had an awful game against Seattle and said he couldn't get his shoddy performance out of his head for weeks after the game.  After going 21-30 for 250+ with the game winning TD drive, I'd say he can put his previous nightmare Super Bowl performance to bed for good.  Big Ben was good, if not great, which made the difference on a night when the seemingly-infallible Steeler D was exposed by Kurt Warner and the Arizona passing game.

  • The officials took off their Steeler jerseys after the 3rd quarter, which led to an exciting, fair finish.  Although the exciting finish will hide it to a degree, the NFL's "top crew" made sure they got plenty of face time in the game, and usually to the Cardinals' expense.  The penalties were horribly one-sided until the Steelers started drawing flags in the 4th.  The roughing the passer and defensive holding call (against the defender on Ward) were terribly arbitrary and kept the Steelers' FG drive moving forward.  I don't think they'll draw a very good grade (at least they shouldn't) if the NFL was keeping tabs.  Glad the game was decided by the teams in the end.
  • What in the hell were the Cardinals doing running a zone coverage on that last drive?  Aside from Miller, the Steelers were going to Holmes, Holmes, Holmes most of the game.  AZ should've double, or triple, teamed his ass and made someone else beat them.  Holmes was the home run threat, the one thing the Cardinals couldn't allow, and he knocked it out of the park with the season on the line.
  • Even though he didn't win the game, Kurt Warner should've locked up his Hall of Fame induction with that epic performance.  Although Ben dodged pressure like he had eyes on the side of his head, it shouldn't be overlooked how the oft-statuesque Warner dodged the ferocious Steeler rush time and again and managed to make the right throw often.  That INT to Harrison will hurt for a long time, but he's done enough to make it to Canton. 
  • I've seen college punters who could've done better than the AZ punter performed.  The Steelers had good field position much of the game.
  • I like Mike Tomlin and it's great to see an African-American coach win sports' greatest prize for the second time in three years.  He's shown he's a great coach and motivator and definitely a worthy successor to Cowher. 
  • Tony Dungy said it best.  It's a mystery why the Cardinals didn't go to Fitzgerald until later in the game.  That's a guy you hit with hitches, back shoulder fades, digs, outs, everything.  The Cardinals should've come out stretching the defense from the start and working that secondary, but they ran the ball and tried the short passing game to other receivers. 
  • Kudos to the Arizona offensive line for bearing down and keeping the Steelers' pass rush in check in the 2nd half.