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“There is no room for second place. There is only one place in my game and that is first place. I have finished second twice in my time at Green Bay and I never want to finish second again.”
Vince Lombardi has a big ol’ smile on his face up there right now, as the Packers have won Super Bowl XLV and are bringing the Lombardi Trophy back to Titletown with a 31-25 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
It didn’t come without adversity, however. Charles Woodson, the man who keeps the defense glued together, went down in the 2nd quarter and was inactive the rest of the game. Donald Driver, the veteran and leader of the wide reciever corps, went down and never returned. Sam Shields was injured in the 2nd, missed most of the third only to return in the 4th.
Green Bay took advantage of two rare interceptions by Ben Roethlisberger to take a 21-3 lead and appeared to be running away with the game. But the Steelers responded like the Steelers always do. Roethlisberger hit Antwaan Randle El for 37-yards, then finished the drive with an 8-yard touchdown pass to Hines Ward, making the score 21-10 and giving Pittsburgh mometum going into halftime.
Pittsburgh continued the mometum in the third quarter. They controlled the time of possession battle, but had trouble finshing off drives. Pittsburgh controlled the ball most of the third quarter, only to put the ball in the endzone once, making the score 21-17 still in favor of Green Bay.
Green Bay stole back mometum when Clay Matthews III knocked the ball loose out of Rashard Mendenhall’s pass and Desmond Bishop recovered. Rodgers took the field and led a drive to capatilize on the third Pittsburgh turnover and threw an 8-yard strike to Greg Jennings to make the score 28-17, in favor of the Packers.
However, the Steelers struck back again. Pittsburgh carried the run game with Mendenhall, who ran it in from 8 yards out. It was then followed by an Antwaan Randle El two point conversion run, putting the Steelers within three, 28-25.
Green Bay then needed to answer with a time-consuming drive that would end with points. Super Bowl XLV MVP Aaron Rodgers delivered. Rodgers drove the ball down the field, and Mason Crosby finished with the field goal to extend the lead to 31-25.
Green Bay’s Tramon William’s knocked the ball out of Mike Wallace’s hands to force a turnover on downs and seal the championship for the Green Bay Packers.
Aaron Rodgers completed 24 of 39 passes for 304 yards and 3 TD’s. He had a far more efficient day then Ben Roethlisberger, who had 263 yards, 2 TD’s and 2 costly INT’s.
Packers reciever Jordy Nelson caught 9 passes for 140 YDS and a TD. Greg Jennings caught two TD catches. For the Steelers, Mike Wallace caught 9 passes for 89 pass and a TD.
Steeler’s RB Rashard Mendenhall ran the ball 14 times for 63 YDs and a TD. Packers rookie RB James Starks ran 11 times for 52 YDS.
In the end, it was the Packers who overcame all the adversity, injuries and huge mometum swings, to come out on top and be crowned the 2011 Super Bowl XLV Champions.