Warner: ‘This one is special’

Without a doubt, one number that will be made into a major storyline leading up to Super Bowl XLIII is 37. That will be Kurt Warner’s age on Super Bowl Sunday, making him the third-oldest starting quarterback in Super Bowl history.

More specifically, Warner will be 37 years, 224 days old on game day. Presuming he starts, the Cardinals’ QB would trail only John Elway (38 years, 217 days in Super Bowl XXXIII) and Johnny Unitas (37 days, 255 days in Super Bowl V) on that list. Incidentally, the Broncos and Colts — with Elway and Unitas at the helm — won those games.

Warner will make his third Super Bowl appearance. His previous two came when he was with the Rams (Super Bowl XXXIV, Super Bowl XXXVI).

“It’s really, really special,” said Warner, who had to fight off emotions early during his postgame press conference. “We had our struggles this year, and no one really knew what to expect coming into the playoffs.

“This one is special. This one is sweet. I know how long its been since the last one, and I’m going to enjoy the opportunity.”

Warner’s performance in Sunday’s NFC Championship Game — 21-of-28 passing, 279 yards, four touchdowns, no interceptions (video highlights) — improved his teams to 8-2 in the playoffs, including 6-0 at home. His passer rating of 145.7 was a career playoff high, and his four touchdowns established a Cardinals playoff record.

Warner also will become the second quarterback in NFL history to start a Super Bowl with two different teams, joining Craig Morton (1970 with Dallas, 1977 with Denver).

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