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Super Bowl XLV: From Head To Shoulders, Troy Polamalu Outweighs Clay Matthews

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Super Bowl XLV: From Head To Shoulders, Troy Polamalu Outweighs Clay Matthews
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

It's too bad only one player can win the AP Defensive Player of the Year award, especially when the two star players pose as the most handsome, gorgeous and stylish figures in the history of professional football. It's not too bad the Super Bowl is being played in Northern Texas at one of the nicest and most spacious venues in football, a modern-age stadium built as if it's the world's colossal palace.

But it's too bad no one has parodied the latest faddish in the NFL this week, a trendy hairdo featured by two stylish celebrities, two of the toughest, hard-driven defenders. In perspective, with a precious hairstyle, nobody has made this the funniest tease in sports, but either way, Troy Polamalu can easily be mistaken for a rock star from the '80s by his long, twirling and curly hair.

There might be a clearer understanding for why his hair is long, from his personal background—Polamalu is of Samoan descent. The cultural principles from the Samoan customs develop an identity and their own agendas, as long hair signifies "strong warrior," a common trait in such an ideal heritage. So does this mean he's a strong warrior, probably considered the mightiest, fastest safety in Steelers history, since he dominates as a defensive force and has the warrior-type mentality?

When he emerges onto the field by game time, Polamalu is the most noticeable player with his ponytail, a trademark that characterizes the long-haired veteran. Polamalu, having endured lots of Super Bowl triumph in his accomplished career, is already loved heavily in Pittsburgh and constantly boosts jersey sales—a perceptible signal that he's one of the premiere stars. With all the fans sending their tributes, he is a stalwart strong safety and captivates the spectators by his toughness and explosiveness.

Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Other than his hair, a simple description to remember Polamalu in the event a person forgets: he is equipped with natural powers on the turf and has the finesse to close out games defensively. Without him, the Steelers aren't the same, but are still alarming to watch to some degree. They aren't bullies, either, but are a bit harmless in his absence. They aren't scary, but are still dangerous.

The all-around defensive back is always a factor in the secondary and transforms the dynamic of games, not because of his hair but his relentless and wildest routes on the field to discombobulate a solid offense.

By logic, he is one of the most basic defensive playmakers in the league, a five-time Pro Bowler and an extremely versatile player to blend in perfectly with a defensive-oriented team. It satisfies Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, privileged to coach a priceless superstar as almighty as Polamalu. Not too many defenders in the league travel across the football field with incredible, out-of-this-world speed that rattles and defers opponents of making plays.

All you need to know is that he's quicker than a jack rabbit or cheetah, and it wouldn't be surprising if he could match the speed of Usain Bolt. Not one bit. The fame was earned, sooner rather than later, when he allowed his hair to grow and became the first Samoan to seize attention in the national spotlight, not only a stylist but an aggressor.

Likewise Clay Matthews, his antagonist for Super Bowl XLV, is similar in many ways.

When it comes to hair, he knows it better than women, it seems; certainly by the way he lets it down on the field. The hefty linebacker from a family that culturally has football in its genes. When he was drafted by the Packers in 2009, the critics made the situation worse and doubted Matthews' performance level, his NFL potential and his pedigree.

And now, he definitely won't forget what could have been an insult to Matthews, after he was two votes shy of taking home the AP Defensive Player of the Year award, motivated and ready to take out his frustration on the field. But he's classy and now carries a lifelong tradition into the modern generation, rising in the national scene with the Green Bay Packers. His father, Clay Jr., played 19 seasons in the NFL, and spent three seasons with Cleveland. His uncle, Bruce, a Hall of Famer, played 19 seasons in the league, too.

This football trait runs in the family and persists, given the Matthews family genre. Even his grandfather, Clay, who played four seasons with the San Francisco 49ers. Now, in this generation, Matthews is a factor for the Packers in the Super Bowl come Sunday, only in his second season and already he's a perennial attacker. A few months from now, his younger brother, Casey, a linebacker at Oregon, will be selected in the 2011 NFL draft.

The legacy continues, and better yet, Matthews is probably the best one in the family as long as he continues to hit and pounce on opponents wildly to make an unbelievable play. As for the hair comparisons, the former Californians from USC, where they both earned their rightful names in football, Troy beats Clay remotely.

While Tom Brady tries to cover his bald spots, Polamalu and Matthews' hair keeps growing and growing, sort of how the Energizer Bunny keeps going and going, right? On media day, he was imitated when his teammate Ryan Clark put on a Polamalu wig and smiled for the cameras, having too much fun.

That's why I use Head & Shoulders for Men to shampoo my hair regularly. That's why I like to use it constantly.

Thanks to Polamalu, my hygiene is better than ever before!

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