In December 2009, the Packers took a six-point lead over the Steelers with 2:06 to play. Starting from his own 14, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger led the team to a one-point win.
In February 2011, the Packers took a six-point lead over the Steelers with 2:07 to play. Starting from his own 13, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger couldn’t get it done.
And that sums up the outcome of Super Bowl XLV. As expected, the game entailed plenty of scoring. The Steelers fought back from an 18-point deficit to keep it interesting throughout the second half. After cutting the score from 21-10 to 21-17, a sense emerged that the Steelers not only would catch the Packers but blow by them. When Ben Roethlisberger badly missed a wide open Mike Wallace on what would have been a 44-yard touchdown pass, the surge of momentum evaporated, punctuated by a 52-yard Shaun Suisham field goal attempt that looked like a postseason kick from the foot of Mike Vanderjagt.
The Packers eventually pushed the lead back to 11 with an Aaron Rodgers touchdown pass to Greg Jennings (their second of the night), but the Steelers didn’t quit.
A 66-yard drive capped by a 25-yard touchdown pass from Roethlisberger to Mike Wallace and a two-pointer on an option play to Antwaan Randle El cut the gap to three. A long drive by the Packers, which nearly resulted in a Larry Fitzgerald-style catch-and-run from Greg Jennings, ended with the three-pointer that pushed the Green Bay lead back to six.
Five plays later, a fourth-down attempt from Roethlisberger to Wallace hit the turf, and Vince Lombardi was waiting to welcome his boys home.
“We’re going back to Titletown baby!” said safety Nick Collins, who returned a first-half interception for a touchdown. “This is big. It’s coming back home. The Vince Lombardi Trophy is coming back home.”
It wasn’t the prettiest or most exciting of Super Bowls, but the Steelers had something that, early in the game, it appeared they wouldn’t — a chance to win the game late. In plenty of past situations, they’ve pulled it off. Tonight, they didn’t.
So congrats to the Packers on getting their fourth Super Bowl win. With the Cowboys and 49ers at five and the Steelers at six and a strong nucleus of talent in Green Bay, the Packers could be getting to No. 5, No. 6, and maybe No. 7.