Ravens 34, 49ers 31
by Ryan Meehan
Super Bowl XLVII is now in the books, and Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco finds himself at the center of the discussions involving where he sits in the list of top ten quarterbacks in the NFL. He’s done the Disneyworld thing, and now I’m finally starting to be able to take in the whole Super Bowl experience. As it turns out, I was very close to being correct about two major things.
Where I was right:
1. The Point Spread
The Ravens’ decision to take the safety in the final seconds of the game may have seemed like a bitch move, but strategically it made a lot of sense because they got to make the free kick which essentially ended the game. Had they not taken the safety, kicked right out of the end zone, and the Niners hadn’t scored, the game would have ended with the Ravens up by 5 points. Because they decided to take the safety, the difference was three points. Since you could argue that maybe that decision could have gone either way, if you meet in the middle in a way it was a four point game which is exactly the spread that I picked.
2. The host city was not well equipped enough to handle the magnitude of the game
Obviously, I’m talking about the power outage here. I am currently working on a piece that describes with blind rage why this should never happen at a professional football game, let alone at a Super Bowl. I don’t give a shit what it takes you to get everything in place to prevent such a thing – you go the extra mile to make sure that it doesn’t happen during the country’s biggest annual sporting event. In larger stadiums that don’t have as much of a history of structural damage, it’s highly doubtful that this would have happened. It was a 35 minute delay altogether, and it seemed like at least three times as long.
Where I was wrong:
Then again, I was wrong about the most important thing that surrounded the Super Bowl: The entertainment value. I thought that this whole thing was going to be a bust from start to finish and I found myself to be sorely mistaken. After the power outage, San Francisco appeared to be energized and did a hell of a job returning from a 22 point deficit to make this one a game worth watching. The game was decided in the last few minutes and when you don’t have a particular team you’re rooting for, that’s all you can hope for from the Super Bowl.
The First Half: D+
Let’s be honest, although Flacco had a great first half and was able to practically walk the Ravens up and down the field this game was turning out to be a blowout quick. They went into halftime up 15 points, and it seemed as if no matter how long the Niners had the ball they weren’t getting into the end zone without a bulldozer. I’m giving it a D+ because we were unable to predict that the second half would be at least twice as exciting.
The Halftime Show: F+
It’s not just that I’m not a fan of Beyonce’s music, I mean, it’s that too…but I couldn’t really understand what was going on during the halftime show. For all of the lighting and explosions going on around the stage, everything seemed to look really dark on television and it was difficult to tell what was going on. I think Destiny’s Child got back together for a few minutes but it could have also been Green Day. I couldn’t really tell. The only thing that really worked in my favor was the performance seemed to echo my theory that the entertainment industry is cranking out an obscene volume of indistinguishable noises.
The Second Half: B+
The third quarter started out with a 108 yard touchdown return by Jacoby Jones, who is slowly becoming the next Devin Hester in the league. (albeit with a significant height advantage) Then of course the lights out, leaving a huge void filled by Shannon Sharpe’s almost unintelligible analysis. Which would have usually been somewhat tolerable, except for they discussed pretty much the same things during the break in the action that they did at halftime. However when play resumed, the Niners appeared rejuvenated and gave fans everywhere the comeback they were looking for. They rallied to force the rest of the game into a one possession situation, and I couldn’t stop thinking about how the Miami Dolphins ever parted ways with Ted Ginn Jr. The 49ers’ final series was marred by what a lot of people are saying was a questionable no-call in the end zone, but I wouldn’t have called it either. And the decision by the Ravens to take the safety was a good one. It may not have been a fan favorite, but they did the right thing.
Overall Grade of the Game: B-/B
I’m going to say a B-minus to a middle B on this one because there were certain players on both sides that I thought really shined. Vernon Davis had seen minimal targeted action since Kaepernick became the starter and played very well. Ted Ginn had a couple very good special teams returns, and when it was apparent the Niners weren’t going to be able to rely on their running game all sorts of players were stepping up. The Ravens got ahead so early that you’d think they’d never had to play from behind, but during the late portion of the second half it seemed like they were the team chasing the Niners. If this game had gone into overtime for some reason, I’m almost certain the 49ers would have won.
Bonus Comment Award: Best Commercial – Dodge Ram: A
This was the one with the Paul Harvey voiceover describing the life of the American farmer that ran in the fourth quarter. It was very intense, very heartfelt, and although it was selling a truck that most people can’t afford in this economy I thought it was hands down the best commercial of the game. By this point we’re all tired of the incessant shock value that is the drivel which GoDaddy’s marketing team produces, and we’ve grown exhausted of the eTrade baby, so it was nice to see something creative that touched the human spirit.
The good thing about next year is we won’t have to hear about Ray Lewis anymore, who for the record played a very pedestrian game in the final matchup of his career. The Ravens were very stubborn in the way that they beat some great teams on their run to the Super Bowl. The Denver and New England games showed us a lot about the character and heart that the Ravens had, but remember there are some question marks no with that defense…Lewis will be gone, and who knows what Ed Reed will do? What we do know about the San Francisco 49ers is that they will definitely be a playoff team in the many years to come, and they have a great coach in Jim Harbaugh who has nothing to be ashamed of. All in all, it was an average year in the NFL that ended with a game that was much better than I had expected.
Once again thanks for visiting First Order Historians and enjoying more of the internet’s finest in user generated content.