Tuesday, January 25, 2011
A Super Bowl Like No Other
Green Bay, AKA Titletown, USA produced the first two Super Bowl champions. The legendary Vince Lomardi built a juggernaut in the 1960’s with his quarterback Bart Starr, the ‘Golden Boy” Paul Hornung at running back and one of my all-time favorite football names Ray Nitschke on defense. If you counted NFL championships as they were referred to before the league merged with the AFL, Green Bay would have accounted for three more championships in the 60’s. They are the first and only professional American sports team to be publicly owned. The Super Bowl trophy for god sakes is named the Lombardi trophy after the iconic coach.
Pittsburgh didn’t pick up any hardware until the 1970’s as they dominated that decade with a menacing defense known as the “Steel Curtain” that featured some of the hardest hitting players the league has ever seen. The names speak for themselves in Mean Joe Green, Mel Blount, and Jack Ham. The offense wasn’t too shabby as well featuring multiple hall of famers in Terry Bradshaw, Franco Harris, Lynn Swan, and John Stallworth. The Steelers had a legendary coach of their own in Chuck Noll and he would lead them to three titles in the 70’s and the 1980 title as well. The Steelers developed there hard nose image by pounding teams into submission in that era and that tradition still proudly lives on today.
Neither team would win another Super Bowl until the late 90’s as Brett Favre led the Pack back to the title in 1997. The Steelers began a new reign of terror as they won titles in 2006, 2008 and look to add another in this year’s Super Bowl.
Another similarity of these two franchises is the two founding fathers of their teams, Curly Lambeau and Art Rooney. You are not a real football fan if you do not know these names. Lambeau built the Packers from the ground up and even coached the team. The Packers stadium bears his namesake. Art Rooney Sr. and the Rooney family have owned the Steelers since 1946 and probably the most famous owners in the entire league. The Rooney rule was established by the NFL just because of Dan Rooney insistence on interviewing minority coaches. The stability of both franchises is amazing as both have been in business since the 1930’s.
All things considered, this should stack up as the most mythical Super Bowl by tradition standards. The two teams have combined to win 9 of the 45 Super Bowls ever. That’s 1 of 5 Super Bowls. They have some of the most memorable moments in football, from the Immaculate Reception to the Lambeau leap. They have a loyal following rather it’s the cheeseheads as they are affectionately known or Steeler nation waving their terrible towels. There hasn’t been a Super Bowl steeped in so much NFL tradition as this one will be.