Most experts have chosen the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Super Bowl. And when you consider the rosters, defenses and offenses, it makes sense to go with the Steelers and not the Arizona Cardinals. But there’s another way to look at the game. Here’s my take on it.
Since the playoffs started, the Arizona offense has been running on all cylinders. Kurt Warner has been very fine and Larry Fitzgerald continues to be the big-play, go-to guy. Edgerrin James has found his running game and the O-line is playing great. In each of three playoff games, the team has scored 30 or more points.
Pittsburgh has played fine, but their offensive line is porous, putting Ben Roethlisberger at jeopardy. The line is also problematic for the running game, especially with Willie Parker running hot and cold. The receiving squad is questionable with Hines Ward nursing an injury.
The Cardinals’ offense has been great in the playoffs, managing numerous picks and fumble recoveries. Their secondary is solid. All season long, Pittsburgh has fielded a great defense. In the playoffs, they have been solid, driving rookie quarterback Joe Flacco to distraction. But Kurt Warner is no rookie and the Cardinals have handled two veteran QBs, Jake Delhomme and Donovan McNabb, ably.
#### Special Teams
Both field goal kickers are on the money and perform well under pressure. The return game edge goes to the Cardinals, while the coverage unit of Pittsburgh is better than Arizona’s.
Hines Ward is hurting and Willie parker may be. That’s bad news for Pittsburgh. J.J. Arrington at running back is trying to make a go of it for the Cards. Arizona receiver Anquan Boldin looks like he is healed and ready to go.
#### My Pick
The Arizona Cardinals will not only win with the point spread (they’re at plus-seven), but they will take the game outright. The surprise of the 2008- 2009 NFL season, the Cardinals, win this one 27- 17.