Super Bowl XLV

Maurkice Pouncey's Injury: It Ain't Sexy, But It's Significant

The Pittsburgh Steelers love to run the ball. Right up the gut and through the heart of their opponents. Always have. Always will.

In their proud history the Steelers have boasted centers Mike Webster, Dermontti Dawson and now, rookie Maurkice Pouncey. Pittsburgh so loved the Florida lineman that they used a first-round draft pick on a center for the first time in their 73-year history.

And how'd it work out for them?

Pouncey made the Pro Bowl, the Steelers led the NFL in rushing touchdowns (10) between the tackles and Pittsburgh is playing in Super Bowl XLV.

One problem: In the AFC Championship Game Pouncey suffered what is being reported to be anything from a sprained to a fractured ankle. Upon arrival at XLV yesterday, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin didn't sound real hopeful Pouncey would play Sunday.

Not good news for Steelers fans.

The Packers, of course, stuff the run with behemoth nose guard BJ Raji and like to stunt sack-happy linebacker Clay Matthews Jr. right up the middle.

In Pouncey's place will be second-year, undrafted lineman Doug Legursky, who will be making his first NFL start in a Super Bowl.

Advantage: Packers.