PACKERS (13-6)

vs. STEELERS (14-4)

Line: Packers by 2 1/2Over/Under:44 1/2

TV-Radio:Ch. 5, WFAN (660), 6:30 p.m.

Two of the NFL's most successful and storied franchises meet for Super Bowl XLV.

I couldn't be happier that the Big Game is in Big D. Make that North Texas. Or is it Arlington? Jerry Jones must be so happy that his Super Bowl nemesis Steelers have a chance to add to their ring of honor.

If the betting line for the game holds at 2 1/2, it will be just the fourth time ever that a Super Bowl has sported a line of less than three points. Interestingly, all three favorites won and covered.

The Steelers won a 37-36 shootout against the Packers last season, but I think Super Bowl XLV will have a more defensive feel. With two of the game's best defensive coordinators - Pittsburgh's Dick LeBeau and Green Bay's Dom Capers - having two weeks to prepare for the other's offense, that's a big advantage.

The early money agrees, as the under/over was pushed down from 46 to 44 1/2.

I've thought the Packers were Super Bowl-bound since the start of the postseason. I picked them to cover three straight times, and twice they were my best bet. The NFC's first No. 6 to reach a Super Bowl has been on fire behind Aaron Rodgers. Did you know that Green Bay hasn't trailed more than seven points in a game at anytime all season?

The Pack has all that going for them, but I believe their lack of a consistent running game will finally catch up with them against the Steelers' No. 1 rushing defense. Also, Pittsburgh's Super Bowl experience is a big factor. A win would give them three titles in six years and 7-1 all-time in the Big Game. Look out for the Terrible Towel, Cheeseheads!

The rally cry in the Steel City has been Stairway to Seven. I have to agree. It'll be Seventh Heaven for Pittsburgh.

The pick:Steelers, 24-17.



(All picks against spread)

Tom Rock (130-130-6): Packers

Bob Glauber (145-115-6): Packers

John Boell (110-106-2): Steelers

Roderick Boone (128-132-6): Steelers

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