The Pittsburgh Steelers are the 2006 Superbowl champions. They defeated the Seattle Seahawks 21 to 10. Pittsburgh has been called a team of destiny for the last month and the way they blasted their way into the Superbowl, they certainly seemed to be that team. But yesterday they got some help to continue to be the team of destiny. A couple of questionable calls by the referees really hurt the Seahawks, who dominated the first half but trailed the Steelers 7 to 3. I think there were three other opportunities when the Seahawks could have created a lead and might have changed the outcome.
In the second half quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, who was probably the best player on the field yesterday, and certainly the best quarterback, threw a strike to one of his receivers on the one yard line at a time when the score was 13 – 10 in favor of the Steelers. But the play was called back for holding, and the Seahawks moved back and eventually lost their chance to score and take the lead. The play showed over and over and analyzed by John Madden declared no sign of a hold on the play. And Madden as a former NFL coach should know, and has never been bashful about giving his opinion. but TEAM OF DESTINY!
The second play was not a mistake on the part of the referees, but an example of the breaks the Steelers were getting. Hasselbeck completed a touchdown pass in the endzone, but it was called back for offensive interference. The receiver had pushed off his defender and caught the pass. He didn’t have to push him away because the defender was on the wrong side of the receiver and couldn’t have gotten to the ball. If pushing off was called on a regular basis the Michael Erving wouldn’t be in the Hall of Fame. TEAM OF DESTINY!
Then came Hasselbecks one big mistake as the Seahawks were marching toward the endzone he was intercepted. He made a great tackle to stop the ball carrier (how often does a quarterback make a tackle – Ben saved the Indie game with one too), and got a penalty for cutting a blocker (hitting too low), but he missed the blocker and ended up being penalized for a terrific tackle. TEAM OF DESTINY!
So Pittsburgh won and for many reasons it was a great story…Jerome Bettis retired immediately following the game, Bill Cowher got his first Super Bowl win, and Pittsburgh has now won five Super Bowl, good-guy Heinz Ward was the MVP, and many people have a warm and fuzzy feeling, but not me. Something just doesn’t feel right, but Pittsburgh was the TEAM OF DESTINY!
No doubt Ben Roethlisberger will be a Hall of Fame QB, but not on this night. Hasselbeck was magnificent in defeat, and Seattles no name defense gave Pittsburgh all they could handle. They deserved better, but someone had to lose. This game will be talked about for years because of some of the plays.
Lastly I want to give mention one of my favorite players. Antwaan Randle-el, former quarterback from Kansas State, who came into the NFL given little chance to make it as a QB, so he proceeded to make himself invaluable to his team by playing on special teams, running kick offs and punts back (he’s really fast), and now playing one of the lead roles as a wide receiver. Wasn’t that a game breaker when on an end around he threw a strike to Heinz Ward for a TD. You see what I admire is his attitude. There have been other QB’s come into the league, told they couldn’t make it and basically said if I can’t play QB I’m out of here. But Randle-el has made a great career for himself and I think he deserves a lot of credit for what he’s done.