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Old 02-09-2009, 06:19 AM   #1
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Default Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Peter King Peter King >
MONDAY MORNING QB
Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger


I need to relive the Steelers' last drive of the Super Bowl. I want to relive it. I watched a DVD of the game sent from NBC the other day, then spoke at length to Ben Roethlisberger Saturday night about one of the great drives in big-game history. Four things that stand out now, eight days after the fact:

1. Roethlisberger still doesn't know why he threw the winning pass into triple coverage to Santonio Holmes. "If I'd thought about it, and now, looking back, seeing what I've seen, I never would have thrown it,'' Roethlisberger told me from southern California, where he was soaking in memories of the best game of his life, getting away from it all, and considering some lucrative endorsement deals.

2. Roethlisberger, playing on adrenaline, toughed out the game with at least two small rib fractures -- which didn't show up in an X-ray the week before the game but did when he got an MRI after returning to Pittsburgh.

3. Mewelde Moore should go down as the unsung hero of the final drive. First he made a crushing, crucial block on a blitzing Aaron Francisco that allowed Roethlisberger to convert a third-and-six into a first down. Later he sold a flat pattern so well that Roethlisberger's arm motion to Moore took cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie off double-coverage on Holmes and onto Moore -- freeing Ben to throw it to Holmes, who, after a slip from Francisco, scampered 40 yards to set up the winning touchdown.

4. Not sure I've ever heard John Madden as excited about a play as he was about Holmes' winning touchdown catch. A guttural "UNBELIEVABLE'' came out of Madden's mouth when he knew Holmes had kept both toes inbounds and fallen to the ground in possession of the ball.

I spent two hours examining the eight plays of the drive, which will go down as an NFL classic. I mean an all-timer. I know Roethlisberger's only 26, but this I can promise: Even if he wins three more Super Bowls and goes to the Hall of Fame someday, Big Ben will never have a championship game drive like this again -- 88 yards, trailing by three, final three minutes, starting with a first-and-20, eschewing anything like a play-it-safe mode, ending with one of the great clutch passes thrown in the NFL.

Lofty words. True words.

Before I take you back to the breezy Tampa night, there's a part of Roethlisberger's football personality that you've got to know. Rewind to Nov. 20, a Thursday night in Pittsburgh. With 2:20 left in the fourth quarter, the Steelers led Cincinnati 20-10, and all Roethlisberger had to do was bleed the clock the rest of the way and the Steelers could go home, safely, winners. But he was quarterbacking for points, not to kill the clock.

With a bum shoulder, he took off out of the pocket from the Bengals' eight, dove for the goal line, stretched his arm with the ball out, and crossed the plane for a touchdown. In the locker room I asked him: "Why not play it safe?'' And he said: "Heck no. I will never ... Casey Hampton said to me on the sidelines, 'What are you doing scoring? Why didn't you just go down at the one?' I said, 'Hamp, don't you know by now? That's my heart.' I'm a competitor. I want to get in the end zone. And I want to win. Period. I don't think about running the clock out. I don't think about saving myself. It'll take someone to bring me down. It's the competitive side. [Coach Mike Tomlin] tells me, 'Don't take a hit. Get down, slide.' But in that situation, it's competition.''

So here we go in the Super Bowl. Arizona 23, Pittsburgh 20, 2:30 left. Ball on the Steeler 22. But guard Chris Kemoeatu holds on first down, so with 2:24 left, the real drive starts on the Pittsburgh 12. "Hard enough to go 78 yards starting on first-and-10,'' Big Ben said. "But the odds of going 88 yards, with 20 yards to go on first down ... '' The Steelers needed about 58 yards to get into Jeff Reed's field-goal range -- but that's not what Roethlisberger was thinking. He wasn't thinking tie and get the game into overtime. He was thinking win.

"Never once,'' he said. "Not on the entire drive do I think 'field goal.' Never do I think, 'Play it safe.' Subconsciously, I guess I knew it. Of course I knew it, because we were down by three. But I wasn't trying to get us into field-goal range.''

Roethlisberger is an interesting case. I've asked other quarterbacks -- Peyton Manning, Brett Favre, Tom Brady -- about big plays and big drives, and they remember tiny details. They're like Tiger Woods going shot-by-shot on a Thursday round (particularly Peyton), able to tell you why he went with the three-iron instead of the four-, 278 yards out from the tall grass on the seventh hole. Not Ben. "I don't remember a lot of the plays from that drive,'' he said. "I just don't remember things in great detail like that.'' So some of this was pulling teeth, but the insight was good.

"I want the ball! I want the ball!'' Holmes shouted before the series. As if Roethlisberger didn't know that.

From the 12: On first down, Roethlisberger evaded Antonio Smith and Darnell Dockett at the 2, rolled right and threw between two defenders to Holmes for 14. I was surprised at his next play, trying to get it off before the two-minute warning -- the long throw up the right side to Nate Washington, blanketed by Francisco.

"Nate's a great jumper, and hopefully he can make a play,'' Roethlisberger said. "It's either going to be complete, incomplete, defensive pass interference or offensive pass interference. Nate knows he can't let that ball be caught.'' Washington and Francisco both bat the jump ball away.

Third-and-six, 1:56 left. "The message from [offensive coordinator Bruce Arians] was, 'Hey, we got two plays to get the first down. Don't force it.' '' When the Steelers were in the shotgun on this drive, the sidecar to Roethlisberger was journeyman back Moore, in for his receiving and blitz-pickup skill. Arizona sent three defensive linemen and stunted and faked four others. But at the snap, five men rushed -- the three front men, plus linebacker Chike Okeafor and Francisco, both of whom came up the middle.

Kemoeatu whammed into Okeafor, neutralizing him, and Roethlisberger, smack-dab in the middle of the pocket, looked like easy pickins for Francisco. But up stepped Moore, and a step before Francisco would have lit into Big Ben, Francisco was stoned and lifted off the ground on a great block by Moore. With a sliver of room, Roethlisberger threaded the ball between Rodgers-Cromartie and linebacker Karlos Dansby. Gain of 13. First down at the Steeler 39. "That's the kind of play that makes Mo special,'' said Roethlisberger. "Great blocker. He's been great for us all year.''

Clock running. Roethlisberger hit Washington on a post-and-out route for 11. Clock running. Roethlisberger saw three receivers covered and scrambled for four up the middle. Timeout. Second-and-six, Arizona 46.

There are big plays in a game, and there are big decisions that lead to big plays. And Rodgers-Cromartie was about to make a decision that he'll regret for a long time, and the Pittsburgh quarterback was about to pull back a pass that'll be the best decision of his NFL career.

On second-and-six, wide receiverHines Ward, tight end Heath Miller and Washington were flanked left, Moore as a sidecar to the right of Roethlisberger, and Holmes six yards outside the right tackle -- the only receiver to the right. At the snap, Moore slithered out to the right flat, and Holmes did a quick 11-yard curl, sitting at the Cards' 35. Because the Cards sent five rushers and blitzed outside 'backer Okeafor from the left instead of leaving him in coverage on the hot receiver (Moore), Roethlisberger had Moore wide open at the 46, with a few yards of free space in front of him.

"I was getting ready to throw it to Mo,'' Roethlisberger said. "In fact, I was throwing it to him -- but at the last possible second I saw Cromartie sprinting up to cover Mo. He must have been reading my eyes. So I pulled it back. Who knows what would have happened had I thrown that one?''

I'll tell you what: Rodgers-Cromartie would have blasted Moore in his tracks. It would have been a gain of one, maybe, and set up about a third-and-five. But that's what huge hands do for you. Roethlisberger has oversized hands, and when he pumped the ball to Moore, he did more than pump -- he almost let the ball go. But at the last moment he saw the corner coming up and pulled the ball back in.

"Then I looked back at Tone [Santonio], and he had some space,'' Roethlisberger said. Big Ben threw to the outside shoulder of Holmes, and Francisco, coming up for the double-coverage, slipped three yards from Holmes. The receiver was off to the races, and Francisco collared him down at the Arizona six.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:20 AM   #2
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Pittsburgh took its last timeout. Now the Steelers had a gimme field goal, but no one on the sideline told Roethlisberger to be safe here. Not with 48 seconds left and a fresh set of downs, six yards from the win. It was time to go for the jugular, and Roethlisberger knew it. On first down, he pumped to Miller near the back of the end zone on the right, pulled it back, and let fly for Holmes at the left corner of the end zone. Holmes had beaten Rodgers-Cromartie and Antrel Rolle. The pass was a little high, but Holmes went up, twisted around slightly ... and just couldn't close his hands around the tight spiral.

"I thought I lost the Super Bowl,'' Holmes would say later.

Roethlisberger didn't care. "Tone knew and I knew I'd go back to him,'' he said.

But the next play had Holmes as the third option. "Mo in the flat, Hines on the pick-pivot, Tone in the corner of the end zone,'' Roethlisberger said, running through his options. Cornerback Ralph Brown "kind of jumped the route'' on Moore at the seven; Brown was wavering between Holmes, running for the corner and covered by Rodgers-Cromartie and Francisco.

Ward "was kind of open, and I almost banged it to him'' at the five, with a Card defender on his back," said Roethlisberger. He knew he could have sledgehammered the ball into Ward, but would his receiver have hung onto it or would it have been knocked away? Finally, Roethlisberger took a micro-second and looked at Miller, but he was covered. Now it was back to Holmes. Brown straddled the goal line, waiting for Big Ben's decision, and when he saw Roethlisberger switch his eyes to Holmes quickly and wind up, Brown skittered back.

"It's one of those throws where you just don't think,'' Roethlisberger said. "You're just trying to put it where the receiver can catch it, but if you don't, he's the only one who can catch it. When I let it go, I thought it was his ball or no one's. But a second later, I see the corner [Brown] and I think, He's gonna pick it off.''

The ball went five inches, maybe six, over the gloved fingertips of the leaping Brown. Francisco was coming in for the kill shot on Holmes. Rodgers-Cromartie reminded me so much of Asante Samuel on last year's miracle catch by David Tyree -- a spectator, strangely and regrettably, on the biggest play of the season, instead of a mugger as soon as the ball hit Holmes' hands.

Holmes had missed the previous throw. Not this one. Leaning over the white boundary stripe, five feet shy of the end line, Holmes snatched the high ball out of the air and got what -- one, two feet down? The Ultra Slow-Motion camera at NBC director Fred Gaudelli's disposal (the network had three of these artsy cameras in use, two low at either end zone, and one on the 50) dispelled all doubt that Holmes got his right foot down. No way referee Terry McAulay would have been able to overturn the call anyway, but Ultra Slow-Mo assured that the Steelers had their touchdown -- and Roethlisberger his drive for the ages.

When he hugged Holmes, Roethlisberger said to him: "The other catch would have been a lot easier. You should have caught that one,'' meaning the pass on the previous play. And they both laughed.

Now that he's relived it a few hundred times, Roethlisberger wouldn't change a thing. Obviously. "I was just trying to make a play,'' he said. "Nothing complicated. Looking back on it, if I was a little timid, or if I thought about it, it's a different story. But you can't play football like that. It's a game of reaction. I play the game one way. You saw it on that drive.''

*******

Regarding the celebrated ribs: Roethlisberger was speared in the kidney area in the AFC Championship Game. His midsection hurt so much that he had X-rays before the Super Bowl. They were negative. But a subsequent MRI told a different story. He found out last Thursday.

"Fractured ribs,'' Roethlisberger said. "Luckily, in the game, I didn't take any big hits to make 'em hurt. But I knew all along there was something wrong. There wouldn't have been anything they could have done about fractured ribs anyway. It was just suck it up and play.''

The kid from Miami of Ohio sucked it up pretty good. The Super Bowl win standings of the Quarterback Class of 2004: Roethlisberger 2, Eli Manning 1, Philip Rivers, J.P. Losman, Matt Schaub 0. Look at the three draft picks in the first round before Roethlisberger in 2004 -- cornerback DeAngelo Hall, wideout Reggie Williams, cornerback Dunta Robinson. Think Atlanta, Jacksonville and Houston regret those picks?
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:21 AM   #3
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Quote of the Week I

"It's just a fact, he hasn't done it in big games. Look at the championship games, the Super Bowl, he hasn't produced in the big game. He had plenty of time to score and possibly tie the game up, but he just didn't come through. Donovan has never really taken the blame for playing bad. A guy like myself and Brian Dawkins or Hugh [Douglas], would always say, 'Hey we played bad, we need to step it up next week.' I really believe it's time for Donovan to just go to another team. I don't think Donovan wants to be here. Donovan's not going to come out and say it, but people would respect him more if he came out and just told the truth. Donovan really doesn't want to be an Eagle. I don't think he's ever been happy here."

-- Former Eagles linebacker Jeremiah Trotter, on WIP in Philadelphia, on quarterback and former teammate Donovan McNabb.
Quote of the Week II

"The Oakland Raiders are back. We're going to go win football games and we're going to be a playoff team. You hear me? I'm not afraid to say that.''

-- Raiders coach Tom Cable, upon having the "interim'' tag removed from his job title on Wednesday.
Quote of the Week III

"I went through the game in my office and I've been now to, I guess, it's 14 straight Super Bowls. This was clearly the toughest [to officiate] that I've ever seen. There was a lot of chippy stuff and pushing after plays. When I looked through it, there was actually much more we could have called if we wanted. [Referee] Terry McAulay, in the pre-game conference, the meeting that we had Saturday, said that the crew was going to officiate this game however the teams present it to us. He said, 'If there are five fouls, there are five fouls.' He said, 'If there are 20 fouls, there are 20 fouls and we'll call them.' And it's almost like he had a premonition. But the statement he made was correct. It's how the game presented itself.''

-- NFL vice president of officiating Mike Pereira, on our Sirius NFL Radio "Opening Drive'' show last Wednesday, on the criticism of the ticky-tack officiating nature of the Super Bowl. McAulay's crew called 20 penalties, and 18 were accepted, for 162 yards.
What I Learned About Football This Week That I Didn't Know Last Week

Hines Ward wasn't the first Steeler to get a special speed-healing blood treatment this season. Troy Polamalu had the same thing done earlier in January to treat an injured calf.

Andrea Kremer first reported in the Super Bowl pre-game show on NBC that Ward had blood drawn in the days after straining a knee ligament in the AFC title game, then had the blood spun around so a concentrated amount of platelets emerged. The platelet-rich blood concentrate was injected near the spot of Ward's injury to help speed the healing. Ward said he didn't know if it worked. Polamalu, too, said he didn't know if the injection helped him.

There is some thought in the NFL that this could be part of a new wave of treatment for players trying to get back in the lineup quickly, but with two Steelers unsure that the treatment helped them, we'll need to see more experimentation with the transfusion process before calling it a success.
Stat of the Week

In his recently expired four-year contract with the Patriots, quarterback Matt Cassel, in salary and bonuses, earned $1.58 million.

New England slapped the franchise tag on Cassel Friday, which for quarterbacks in 2009 is a guaranteed one-year salary of $14.65 million. The Patriots can keep Cassel and pay him that money, keep him and sign him to a long-term contract, or trade him to a team for compensation.

If New England keeps him for that franchise number, Cassel will make more in two weeks ($1.72 million) than he made in 68 game-weeks in his first four years as a Patriot.
Factoid of the Week That May Interest Only Me

The New York Post's lead story on the Alex Rodriguez steroid scandal in Sunday's paper was 18 paragraphs long. There were four bylines on it, and at the end of the story two more writers were credited with additional reporting. Six writers for 461 words. That's 77 words per writer, or 19 more words each writer than this paragraph.
Enjoyable/Aggravating Travel Note of the Week

Sight to behold on the day after the Super Bowl at the Orlando Airport: Group of Steelers fans, getting ready to fly home, seated in the Continental departure area, waiting for a flight to Newark. They're happy. They're disheveled. One 40-ish man, portly, has a black Penguins T-shirt on, and he's eating some chicken, and he doesn't have a napkin, and when he finishes, he takes the bottom of his T-shirt, lifts it up, wipes his mouth with it -- revealing a huge and hairy stomach --and then wipes his hands with it.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:21 AM   #4
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Ten Things I Think I Think

1. I think everyone doing free-agent lists should add one name in pencil: Terrell Owens. I'll bet you a month's worth of lattes he'll be free in six weeks.

2. I think Jon Gruden is absolutely, positively right. "Tim Tebow is a Wildcat who can throw. This guy is 250 pounds of concrete cyanide. He throws well enough at any level to play quarterback,'' Gruden told the Orlando Sentinel the other day. Scouts in the NFL like to look at very unusual players like Tebow, who can play quarterback, running back, H-back and tight end, and say, He can't fit into our system. He'd be a fourth-round pick -- maybe. Big, big mistake. Tim Tebow is the kind of player you draft in the first or second round and find 20 plays a game he can fit in somewhere, minimum, or let him compete for a starting quarterback job. You watch. Next year, when Tebow comes out, a smart and flexible organization with a smart and flexible coach -- like New England or Baltimore -- won't let Tebow get out of the first round.

3. I think Matt Cassel will not play for the Patriots in 2009.

4. I think Kurt Warner will play for the Cardinals. Seeing Todd Haley go to the Chiefs, and figuring the Chiefs want a quarterback, and figuring they can get Warner to pilot them for the next year or two is awfully faulty logic. First, Scott Pioli doesn't want a quarterback for the next 10 minutes. He wants a quarterback for the future. Second: The Patriots picked their own quarterbacks, which is the way Pioli wants it. That's not to say the Chiefs will get a sixth-round QB like Brady or a seventh-rounder like Cassel, but there's a much better chance they'll develop their own than go outside the organization for one. Even if the Chiefs have no interest in Cassel, I can tell you that Pioli wouldn't have wanted to pay him $10 million a year anyway -- plus significant compensation in draft choices.

5. I think I like the Haley pick for the Chiefs. He and Pioli have much in common: Pioli was a college coach, then a scout, then a GM. Haley was a scout, then an inside personnel man, then an assistant coach, and now a head coach. "We both went on the same trip in New York -- scouting just about every small school east of the Mississippi,'' Haley recalled Sunday. "Scott did it in 1996, I think, and I did it a year later. Elizabeth City State, Hampton, school after school, looking for players. I started feeling good during the interview when Scott said to me: 'You've always respected scouts. Not all coaches do.' '' Haley first coached under Bill Parcells with the Jets, and this is the advice Parcells had for Haley when the pupil phoned the teacher for advice last week: "Don't [screw] it up.''

6. I think some of you might not agree with me, but I'm boycotting the worst all-star game in sports history, the Pro Bowl. You'll have to look elsewhere to read about meaningless nothing.

7. I think it doesn't take a Ph.D. to see the Texans went a little too hard in offseason practices, as ESPN reported. The league can't let this go by without penalty.

8. I think one of the biggest MMQB fans on the planet, Michael Whelan of New Orleans (formerly of Detroit), got married over the weekend and deserves a kudo or two, particularly for finding such a lovely gal in Emily Edwards. But Michael: No invite for the Kings of Montclair? Come on! We sat home Saturday night and watched Casablanca! We'd have loved an excuse for a trip to New Orleans! There was a huge Saints' presence (I think everyone but Reggie Bush was there), including best man/PR guru Greg Bensel, but the most stunning event of the night was the wheeling-out of the wedding cake: a red-and-white Detroit Red Wings logo. That allowed Saints GM Mickey Loomis to get off the line of the night: "For Bensel to allow a Detroit Red Wings cake at this wedding is just bad Best-Manning.''

Good luck, newlyweds.

9. I think I don't understand why it became such a sticking point in the contract Jerry Jones slid under Dan Reeves' nose that Reeves would have to work X number of hours per week. I side with Reeves here. Does Wade Phillips have a minimum-hours clause in his deal? And you'd ask a man who's been a head coach in two places, and who's dying to get back into full-time football work, to have a number of hours inserted in the contract? What was Reeves supposed to do, punch in? If Jones needed that assurance, he shouldn't have gone so far down the road with Reeves.

10. I think these are my non-football thoughts of the week:

a. David Beckham should be ashamed. Nice message he sends to his children and to the soccer community full of children by signing a five-year contract with Major League Soccer in 2007, opening a soccer academy in California, then trying to walk out on the deal last week because he likes his new team in Milan. Play hardball, Don Garber. Get a ransom for the bum.

b. Nice friends you've got there, Michael Phelps. Even if a total stranger snapped that photo at the University of South Carolina, the mercenary who took it and sold it should be more ashamed than Beckham.

c. A-Rod! Never lie to Katie Couric, and never lie to her when you know the truth is bound to come out someday. I probably side with Tony Massarotti of the Boston Globe, who wrote intelligently Sunday that it's pretty absurd to blame Rodriguez and Rodriguez alone as the only one of 104 baseball players who tested positive for steroid use five years ago. A-Rod doesn't deserve a hall pass for doing 'roids. He also doesn't deserve to be the only one nailed to the cross for doing them.

d. By the way, Selena Roberts and David Epstein, that was some great work. Congratulations on breaking the story of the year for SI.

e. Whoa, Coldplay. Heck of a performance at the Grammys last night. Tremendous. That's a band I need to see.

f. Nice week for Jennifer Hudson, starting with the National Anthem at the Super Bowl and ending at the Staples Center with a live performance at the Grammys. Gutsy.

g. If I don't see Gran Torino soon, I'm going to scream.


Find this article at:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/200...ers/index.html
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:53 AM   #5
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Very nice read, mesa - thank you! Reading the play by play of that final drive as described by Ben gave me chills all over again!
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:10 AM   #6
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

And we get to watch Ben for .....oh probably at least 10 more years ( if his poor battered body holds out that long). And now to find out he won a Superbowl with fractured ribs..........his legend grows! Please, please, please get this superhero some supermen around him.........he deserves better!

What a great time to be a Steelers fan! With Tomlin, Ben and our D........we are in for one helluva ride! Order those home defibulator units now, folks......we going to need them!
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"We're not going to turn our backs on him," Ward said. "We're going to treat him like our brother. We're going to accept him back and be very supportive of him and help him get through this. In this locker room, he's still our quarterback."

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Old 02-09-2009, 08:30 AM   #7
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

That's my favorite column every week during the season.
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Old 02-09-2009, 09:33 AM   #8
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Here was the hidden play of that drive:

Quote:
Third-and-six, 1:56 left. "The message from [offensive coordinator Bruce Arians] was, 'Hey, we got two plays to get the first down. Don't force it.' '' When the Steelers were in the shotgun on this drive, the sidecar to Roethlisberger was journeyman back Moore, in for his receiving and blitz-pickup skill. Arizona sent three defensive linemen and stunted and faked four others. But at the snap, five men rushed -- the three front men, plus linebacker Chike Okeafor and Francisco, both of whom came up the middle.

Kemoeatu whammed into Okeafor, neutralizing him, and Roethlisberger, smack-dab in the middle of the pocket, looked like easy pickins for Francisco. But up stepped Moore, and a step before Francisco would have lit into Big Ben, Francisco was stoned and lifted off the ground on a great block by Moore. With a sliver of room, Roethlisberger threaded the ball between Rodgers-Cromartie and linebacker Karlos Dansby. Gain of 13. First down at the Steeler 39. "That's the kind of play that makes Mo special,'' said Roethlisberger. "Great blocker. He's been great for us all year.''
The catch by Holmes was huge. He really had to elevate for it and fight for the ball. If he doesn't come down with it, it's 4th and 6.
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Old 02-09-2009, 09:39 AM   #9
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Quote:
Originally Posted by stillers4me View Post
And now to find out he won a Superbowl with fractured ribs..........his legend grows!
Ahhh, that's just Ben being a "drama queen" again.
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:54 AM   #10
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Default Re: Reliving Pittsburgh's final drive, through the eyes of Roethlisberger

Quote:
Originally Posted by mesaSteeler View Post
Enjoyable/Aggravating Travel Note of the Week

Sight to behold on the day after the Super Bowl at the Orlando Airport: Group of Steelers fans, getting ready to fly home, seated in the Continental departure area, waiting for a flight to Newark. They're happy. They're disheveled. One 40-ish man, portly, has a black Penguins T-shirt on, and he's eating some chicken, and he doesn't have a napkin, and when he finishes, he takes the bottom of his T-shirt, lifts it up, wipes his mouth with it -- revealing a huge and hairy stomach --and then wipes his hands with it.
I know some will bash King for writing this but I would have called it out too. Come on you slob, can't you get a napkin from the food rotunda? Jesus...

That being said, we aren't all redneck slobs like this, sports world...

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