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MVP debate begs the question, was Santonio Holmes the right choice in Super Bowl 43?

The Pittsburgh Steelers Super Bowl win over the Arizona Cardinals was memorable in a lot of ways, but it begs the question...did they get the MVP right?

Syndication: USA TODAY Robert Deutsch / USA TODAY NETWORK

In the wake of the Super Bowl between the Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals, the debate is going on as to who should have been the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the game. Wide receiver Cooper Kupp was the recipient of the award, but there are plenty of people who believe Aaron Donald should have been the MVP. There is even a section of the audience who believe Matthew Stafford should have gotten some consideration.

For the players, I doubt they care. Sure, Kupp will be rewarded for his MVP, but the Super Bowl win is what they all ultimately care about. With that said, it got me thinking about the Pittsburgh Steelers. I thought about the players who were given the MVP for their Super Bowls, and whether they were the right recipients of the award.

In Super Bowl XL, Hines Ward was the obvious choice. Some might have suggested Willie Parker should have gotten some consideration, but Ben Roethlisberger’s play was so horrid in that game there weren’t many other options for the black-and-gold after defeated the Seattle Seahawks.

However, in Super Bowl XLIII there could certainly be a case for the committee who selects the MVP getting it wrong. As we all know, wide receiver Santonio Holmes was the player who was awarded MVP honors, but there were a couple players who also could have been given the award.

Monday I took to Twitter to poll Steelers fans on who they think should have been the MVP of that famous Super Bowl. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone the majority of the fan base believes Roethlisberger should have been given the MVP.

Maybe this is a product of the recent retirement of Roethlisberger, and fans thinking back to all the good times and Super Bowl wins. Or maybe they look back and believe there is no way they win the game without Roethlisberger.

What was interesting about the Twitter poll were the amount of fans who believe Harrison should have gotten the award. Harrison’s 100-yard interception returned for a touchdown was at least a 10-point swing, quite possibly a 14-point swing going into halftime. Almost as many fans who believed Holmes was the rightful recipient, also believed Harrison should have been named MVP.

Before we get to the poll here at BTSC, let’s take a look at how these three players performed vs. the Cardinals in Super Bowl 43:

Santonio Holmes
Stat Line: 9 receptions, 131 yards, 14.6 average, 1 TD, 40 yard long, 12 targets

Holmes dominated the last drive of the game, and that lasting toe-tapping catch, was enough to get him the MVP of the game. When looking at his statistics, Holmes had himself a game, and it shouldn’t matter the majority of his production came in the 4th quarter. After all, that’s when it mattered most.

Ben Roethlisberger
Stat Line: 21/30, 256 yards, 8.5 average, 1 TD, 1 INT, 3 sacks, 22 yards, 47.7 QBR, 93.2 Rating

Roethlisberger’s stat line was shockingly mediocre, until the last drive of the game, and the same thing was said about Holmes. When you look at the last drive of the game, it makes the rest of the game melt away. It was that good. That last drive was vintage Roethlisberger. In 5 years, if someone comes to me and says, “What would be one drive which would show what Roethlisberger was all about?” I’d show them that drive.

James Harrison
Stat Line: 4 tackles, 3 solo, 1 pass defense, 1 INT, 1 TD

I was surprised when I saw Harrison’s stat line when looking up the box score. Outside of the interception at the end of the half, the Defensive Player of the Year (DPOY) was pretty much a non-factor in the game. But when you think about just how amazing, and game-changing, the interception return was in the outcome of the game, you cannot downplay its significance.


Okay, enough numbers, who do you think should have been the MVP of the game? This isn’t an indictment against any of the players, considering all made plays which resulted in the Steelers claiming their 6th Super Bowl championship. Just a fun offseason discussion/debate.

Let us know your thoughts in the poll below, and be sure to explain yourself in the comment section!

Poll

Who should have been the MVP of Super Bowl 43?

This poll is closed

  • 31%
    Santonio Holmes
    (310 votes)
  • 48%
    Ben Roethlisberger
    (474 votes)
  • 19%
    James Harrison
    (192 votes)
  • 0%
    Other
    (4 votes)
980 votes total Vote Now

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the start of the new league year, and the 2022 NFL Draft.