ATLANTA - DECEMBER 4: Quarterback Cam Newton #2 of the Auburn Tigers throws a first quarter touchdown pas during the 2010 SEC Championship against the South Carolina Gamecocks at Georgia Dome on December 4 2010 in Atlanta Georgia. (Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)
Super Bowl XLV will feature two of the NFL's elite quarterbacks. Super Bowls almost always do. Ben Roethlisberger and Aaron Rodgers bring forth an interesting storyline, however, that could eventually make Auburn quarterback - one of the top QB prospects available in the 2011 NFL Draft - a very rich dude.
Rodgers is a classic pocket passer, but has been at his most impressive this post-season in avoiding the rush and making plays on the move. He put on a clinic against Atlanta in avoiding the pass rush and making throws down the field - and in Green Bay's three playoff wins this season, he's added two rushing touchdowns. Roethlisberger, meanwhile, is the pictorial definition of a playmaking quarterback, as making plays with his legs has become his trademark in his illustrious career.
The NFL is a copycat league, and the fact that the Super Bowl will pit two young quarterbacks capable of making plays on their own could make a prospect like Newton more attractive to league talent evaluators. (The same may hold true for senior Jake Locker, who is actually a better athlete than Newton is.) Newton, who led Auburn to an undefeated season and a national championship while scoring 48 touchdowns and winning the Heisman Trophy, is in the Roethlisberger mold - a huge quarterback with an uncanny ability to make things happen on his own.
Said former NFL executive Greg Gabriel of Newton's abilities: "He doesn't have great speed - he's probably going to be a 4.75, 4.8 guy - but he's got real quick feet and a great feel for the rush. Then he throws well when he's on the run."