Three-plus months ago, Santonio Holmes was held out of Pittsburgh’s game against the defending champion New York Giants because he had been found by police with drugs in his car. Sunday night, Holmes made one of the biggest catches in NFL history, a 7-yard tiptoe, sideline-hugging touchdown grab with 35 seconds left to give the Steelers a 27-23 victory over the upstart Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII.
The MVPs of Pittsburgh’s previous Super Bowl victories are beloved Hall of Famers Franco Harris, Lynn Swann and Terry Bradshaw along with Holmes’ fellow current starting receiver, Hines Ward, now arguably the most popular Steeler. Holmes, who turns 25 next month, is nowhere near the status of those Pittsburgh heroes yet — although he was smart to bring his three adorable youngsters with him to his postgame press conference.
However, it’s a fair bet that the former Ohio state star will receive the loudest cheers — evne louder than those for quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and longtime owner Dan Rooney — during the Steelers’ Super Bowl parade later this week in the ‘Burgh.