Five Things That Would Make Super Bowl 47 That Much Sweeter
The Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers are two teams that are feeling over-whelming senses of vindication these days. After all, both teams were in their conference title games last year, and came up short in extremely close games.
On top of that, Baltimore battled a rash of injuries to key players and late-season losses to somehow hold onto their division and get a wild card spot in the playoffs. For them, the rest is history. San Francisco, meanwhile, got here after making a controversial switch at quarterback from Alex Smith to Colin Kaepernick.
Some say that the 2013 Super Bowl is destined to be a low-scoring, defensive affair. Maybe, maybe not. Either way, here are five things that would without a doubt make this Super Bowl worth watching and much more interesting – if not even sweeter:
1. Randy Moss Has the Game of His Life
Moss has been the third or fourth guy on the totem pole in San Fran’s offense all year, and he expressed his disdain for it on media day. He’s been in one other Super Bowl prior to this one, yet doesn’t have a ring and calls himself the greatest receiver of all-time. His numbers allow that to be a debate, but his lack of rings and horrible attitude throughout his career arguably do not. However, he could surely make a case on his own accord if he blew up in the biggest game of his life. Just think about it: what if vintage Moss showed up and Kap tossed him three 50+ yard scores as the 49ers took the top off an aging Ravens defense?
On the flip-side, Moss haters would say it’d be even sweeter if Moss got a goose egg in this one and the 49ers lost 82-3.
2. Justin Smith Leads the 49ers in Sacks
Smith has been the anchor to the 49ers’ defense, in my opinion, and I’m pretty sure a lot of people would agree. When he’s on the defensive line, his physical and relentless presence frees up Aldon Smith, and also makes their run defense that much tougher to move the ball on. Smith isn’t remotely healthy right now and will need surgery for a torn triceps, but he’s still gutting it out on this fantastic run for the 49ers. How sweet would it be if he had his best game of the year in the most trying of situations, with such a tough injury to play with at his position?
Smith only had three sacks during the regular season, but how cool would it be if he matched that total in the biggest game of his life, with the odds against him? Um, pretty cool, brah.
3. Alex Smith Replaces an Injured Colin Kaepernick and Gets the Win
I never wish injury on anybody, but you have to admit this would be sweet, poetic justice for Alex Smith. Smith lost his job to Kaepernick due to a concussion, and he’s been stewing ever since he went down. True, Kaepernick looks better than Smith and the move was clearly the right way to go, but I can’t help but think the 49ers would still be hear even with Smith under center. The fact remains: Smith got the 49ers to the NFL title game last year, and had it not been for two lost fumbles by Kyle Williams in that game, the 49ers could have easily found themselves in the Super Bowl last year.
Even if Kap doesn’t get hurt, it’d be nice to see Smith get some garbage time if the 49ers blow this one open and have a big lead late. But if he was forced into action with the game still in doubt, I firmly believe Smith would respond in a positive fashion.
4. Ed Reed Gets a Pick Six or Three
Ed Reed is 35 and pretty much done in Baltimore. He says he’ll return to play in 2013, but it doesn’t appear likely it’ll be with the Ravens. So, right now, it’s all about getting his first Super Bowl win, and ending his Ravens career in spectacular fashion, if at all possible. Colin Kaepernick is a developing talent with an incredibly high ceiling, but I don’t think he’s faced a defense that can be as harrowing as Baltimore in these playoffs yet. Remember, he tossed a pick six against the Packers in the Divisional round, too, so this is certainly possible to happen again.
If Kap did implode a bit, it’d be that much sweeter if it was Ed Reed using his ball-hawking skills to help the Ravens to a win.
5. Ray Lewis Makes a Game Saving Tackle and is MVP
I know I’m leaving big names like Joe Flacco, Ray Rice and Frank Gore off this list, but they just don’t meet my requirements in terms of emotion and hype. Lewis rounds it out, as he’s the most emotional player in this game, and this is said to be his final NFL performance.
I can understand the hate towards him as some think he’s not very genuine or too over the top at times. Others contest that he is a murderer and gets far too much love and respect. Maybe, but that’s all in the past now and this is football we’re talking about, not politics or a talk show.
The simple fact is, Lewis is playing in his final game on a stage where everyone will see every single move he makes. If you’re a fan of the Ravens or Lewis, nothing would be sweeter than for Lewis to rack up an insane amount of tackles like he’s been doing all post-season long, as well as take home the game’s MVP trophy. On top of that, with this expected to be fairly close game, how crazy would it be if Lewis made the deciding play on the final meaningful snap of the game?
Whether it’s a sack or pick of Kaepernick or stuffing Frank Gore on fourth down or at the goal-line, Lewis having the last word would be something few would forget in regards to Super Bowl 47.
Ultimately, we can’t really predict this Super Bowl or any other with much certainty. We suspect both teams will come read for a dog fight. Both teams are well coached and are very balanced on both sides of the ball, and both teams want it bad.
Who knows how sweet it will be for either side until we get there. All I know is that it’s destined to be a great battle, and if any of the above happens, it’ll be just a tad more sweeter.