This week I have read and seen Super Bowl predictions by current and former players/coachers, celebrities, respected writers, snarky bloggers and even a degenerative brain disease.
After two weeks of hype, ridiculous statements, Harbaughs, hyperbole, and all other kinds of nonsense…why should you give two craps about this Super Bowl prediction? Uh, not sure. Not a very convincing case, I know. But this is a blog about football, which I’m pretty sure obligates us to make a pick here so here goes nothing.
Conference Title Weekend: 1-1
Overall (for the playoffs): 7-3
Mood: Knowledgeable, Awesome.
It’s not too late to run to your bookie! Let’s do this!
The Freakin’ Super Bowl: Ravens vs. 49ers
One of the major subplots of this game, as I’m sure Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will inform you tomorrow, is I had my doubts about both of these quarterbacks during the season. To me the switch to Colin Kaepernick seemed like arrogance, like a coach becoming obsessed with a shiny new toy. Meanwhile, I have taken every opportunity to talk shit about Joe Flacco the entire season. To me, it always felt like he could and should be doing more. Colin proved me wrong from his first start onward, while it took Flacco until the playoffs to show that maybe he is the big name quarterback that he wants to be paid like.
I think both will play well tonight, but I actually give a slight edge to Flacco on this match-up. The reason being that I simply don’t think the pistol offense is hard to defend as some believe it is. While I think it does put defenses in a unique bind, I don’t think that after two weeks of preparation the Ravens defense will come out as unprepared as the Packers did, and I don’t think they will be as physically outmatched as the Falcons were. The 49ers secondary is not the strongest part of that defensive unit, and if the Ravens can protect up front I believe the San Fran defensive backs can be exploited. While I don’t think Baltimore’s offense is going to be able to throw down the field consistently, Flacco’s deep ball should lead to at least one touchdown of over sixty yards.
The previous paragraph makes it sound like I’m going to pick the Ravens, which thankfully for them (they tend to perform the exact opposite of my expectations) is not the case. I think the 49ers are one of the few teams in football that can have their quarterback be out performed and yet still consistently win just because of the overall talent of the team. Even if Kaepernick struggles throwing the ball, I still think they will be able to run the ball enough to win a close game. The Ravens, on the other hand, I think are going to be depending on Flacco’s arm almost entirely by the second half. I do not believe they will be able to run the ball against the 49ers front seven and in a Cam Cameron-esque move, they get a little too pass happy.
I’m envisioning a close game late, and a Kaepernick play action fake leaving Randy Moss wide open for the decisive score!
Or another receiver. Just wanted to use that graphic again.
Score: Ravens 23, 49ers 27.
Non QB Super Bowl MVP predictions
Look, we all know that the winning quarterback is all but guaranteed the MVP award, but this game lends itself to a non QB more so than a lot of Super Bowls in recent memory. On the 49ers side, their running game could make it hard for voters to say Kaepernick. For the Ravens, they have multiple big name defensive players who could be a possibility because of their big play potential and…big name. Plus, if Flacco has an average game but one receiver in particular catches some of his only big plays, that man could take home the award.
For the 49ers, I think Frank Gore is the most likely non QB alternative. All that time spent trying to shut down Kaepernick’s outside runs should leave some room up the middle for Gore to do his business. While for the Ravens I think the voters will trip all over themselves trying to give Ray Lewis this award…but he simply won’t have that big of an impact. I think if they win it could be because of Torrey Smith’s vertical routes.
Honorable mention: Deer antler spray.
-In an awkward moment, the Raiders ownership is caught on camera pleading with the Harbaugh parents to give birth to one more good coach.
-Ravens receivers will attempt to psyche out Chris Culliver by blowing him mid play.
-Even though they aren’t playing the Patriots, Bernard Pollard will somehow find a way to injure Aaron Hernandez.
Let us know who you think will win in the comments section!