It’s the television event of the year, so big that even the commercials are ranked by importance and influence. It’s Super Bowl XLV, and media members and celebrities will flock from all across the country to celebrate the event and root on the two teams participating.
With the spotlight set on the Super Bowl, who should be considered to be the faces of this year’s big game? The Wife Hates Sports has the answer – ranking this year’s most influential faces of the Super Bowl – in a three-part series. Chime in on your own personal rankings, and let’s celebrate the Green Bay Packers, Pittsburgh Steelers and Super Bowl XLV.
The 45 Faces of Super Bowl XLV (Part 3 of 3)
15. Hines Ward
The Pittsburgh WR doesn’t post gaudy numbers like he used to, and clearly Mike Wallace has taken over as the team’s top receiver. But no one can question the fact that the fiery Ward has plenty of Super Bowl experience, and can still make big plays when it counts most.
14. Lamar Woodley
Lamar Woodley is yet another beast on the Pittsburgh front seven that can harass the opposing quarterback on a regular basis. He had 10 sacks during the regular season and followed that with a sack in each of the Steelers’ two playoff games.
13. James Starks
James Starks is the biggest reason the Packers have had so much postseason success. Say what you want about the elite performances of Rodgers and the defense, Starks has made the Green Bay running game more relevant, keeping opposing defenses honest. The most amazing stat: Starks had just 29 carries for 101 yards during the regular season, and 70 carries for 263 yards and 1 TD during the postseason.
12. Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders
Only six NFL teams do not feature a cheerleading squad, and the Steelers and Packers are two of them. While the cameramen may now be able to focus more on trick plays, don’t fret; Jerry Jones will make sure that the famous Cowboys cheerleaders have plenty of involvement.
11. Rashard Mendenhall
Many will know Mendenhall as the guy who humped Ben Roethlisberger after a victory formation play in Pittsburgh’s win over the Jets in the AFC Championship. But he should be known more as the Steelers’ workhorse, and the numbers show it (2010: 324 carries, 1,273 yds, 13 TD)
10. Greg Jennings
The Packers’ top receiver has established himself as one of the NFL’s best, and his regular season stats (76 receptions, 1,265 yards, 12 TD) cement that fact. Jennings has also been a beast in the playoffs, catching 16 balls for 231 yards over Green Bay’s last two games.
9. James Harrison
100 total tackles, 10 ½ sacks, 6 forced fumbles, 2 interceptions and a pantload of fines and controversial hits – that’s James Harrison’s regular season in a nutshell. And oh yeah, he also had three sacks in Pittsburgh’s divisional round grudge match against the Ravens.
8. Jerry Jones
Where to start with the Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager? The game is at his billion dollar stadium/theme park, and reports have emerged that fans are being charged $200 to watch the game on a big screen TV, while sitting on a lawn. There’s also the chatter about $900 parking spots nearby. Dallas is often called “Jerry’s World”, but sometimes his behavior makes me wonder if he’s really on the same planet instead. Either way, the Cowboys owner will have the red carpet out.
7. Ralph Bruno
Many will not be familiar with the name, but Ralph Bruno is the creator of the “cheesehead”. Bruno made the first one by hand and wore it to a Milwaukee Brewers game in 1987. The silly foam hats have since become a staple of the Green Bay Packers and all Wisconsin sports.
6. Myron Cope
The late Myron Cope will be gone three years as of late February, and while it’s sad to see a legend gone, he’ll also be considered “The voice of the Pittsburgh Steelers.” What some don’t realize is that Cope was also the creator of Pittsburgh’s famous “Terrible Towel”, back in 1975. The kicker: Today, these towels are mass produced in, you guessed it, Wisconsin.
5. Clay Matthews
The 24-year old Packers linebacker is a beast, and many consider him a lock for defensive player of the year. His 13 ½ sacks during the regular season were impressive, and his hair is, too. But would he win “The Hair Bowl” against his Super Bowl competition, Troy Polamalu?
4. Troy Polamalu
As mentioned with Clay Matthews, Polamalu is widely known for his hair, and would he win “The Hair Bowl” (vote below), or not? But it also must be noted that Polamalu is the heart and soul of the Steelers defense, and arguably the smartest and most feared safety in the NFL.
3. Aaron Rodgers
Making his first Super Bowl, Aaron Rodgers has pushed himself further away from Brett Favre’s shadow. His performance against the top-seeded Falcons (31-36, 366 yds, 3 passing TD’s and 1 rushing TD) was one of the best QB performances in recent playoff memory.
2. Ben Roethlisberger
Roethlisberger has had to overcome a lot this season, dealing with fan backlash due to off-the-field issues. While many of his teammates have stated that he has changed, his game hasn’t. Roethlisberger continues to be one of the most clutch quarterbacks in the NFL, and now is hoping to earn his third Super Bowl ring.
1. Vince Lombardi
It’s only fitting that Vince Lombardi tops this list. Lombardi is one of the greatest and most influential coaches in the history of the National Football League. Heck, the Super Bowl trophy is named after him, and this time around, the game features the team he’s most known for coaching (Green Bay Packers), plus the team that currently has the most Super Bowl victories (Pittsburgh Steelers with 6). During his coaching career, Vince Lombardi had a playoff record of 9-1 and an overall coaching record of 105-35-6. The late Lombardi (and the trophy named after him) have heavy ties here – and no one fits better at the top of this list. Period.
That concludes the list, and now it’s time to sound off on where you would rank those mentioned, or anyone that you feel should have been included instead.
Enjoy Super Bowl XLV, and as always, thanks for reading The Wife Hates Sports…
Who Will Win Super Bowl XLV? Total Voters: 44
Who Will Win Super Bowl XLV?
Total Voters: 44
Who Wins "The Hair Bowl" at Super Bowl XLV? Total Voters: 31
Who Wins "The Hair Bowl" at Super Bowl XLV?
Total Voters: 31
Thanks buddy, I appreciate that.
You know, over last summer, when I was up to WI for a wedding… I went around the state some with family and did take the tour of Lambeau. It was pretty awesome, and the tributes to Lombardi in the hall of fame museum were fantastic, too. It really gave me a new appreciation for that franchise, and for him, too.
Well, now I’m hearing Pouncey’s chance of playing is at 75%, perhaps according to him. That’s impressive considering the injury, but can’t blame the guy for wanting to get out there. I originally had him lower thinking there was no way that he would play with a high ankle sprain, and that his news would die down sooner…
If this posts twice it’s not my fault.
Great post man. I got no problem with your list either. Nice tribute to Coach Lombardi.
Good luck to your team brother.
I’d probably have to put Pouncey higher on the list, at least in the Top 15, not because he’s a Florida Gator but because so many of the pundits are saying Pittsburgh’s going to have a significantly tougher time winning without him.