Super Bowl XLVII is in the books and there is one thing everyone will be talking about come Monday…how mediocre the commercials were. Alright, maybe they might also mention the power outage which delayed the game for 34 minutes, and actually helped the San Francisco 49ers turn a runaway Baltimore Ravens beat down into a close three point, 34-31 nail bitter.
The game had it all, an early blowout, a late-game comeback, turnovers, touchdowns, a record tying kick-off return and one big questionable no-call. With so much packed into the NFL’s marquee game, it is hard to know where to start first.
Let there be…uh, guys?
The Baltimore Ravens came out fast and kept the pressure as they built a 28-6 lead early in the third quarter. Jacoby Jones took the opening kickoff of the second half out from eight yards deep in the end zone in what had to be a “no, no,no…yes, yes, yes” moment for coach John Harbaugh. The record-tying 108-yard kick return put the Ravens firmly in the driver’s seat.
Up 22 against a dejected San Francisco 49ers’ team made it seem as if this Super Bowl would become a laugher. It got so bad that one of the members of the custodial staff fell asleep and accidentally flipped off the light switch for half of the stadium. The subsequent 34 minute delay turned into a Godsend for the 49ers, as the break ostensibly took all the momentum away from the Baltimore Ravens.
The Niners put up 17 points in four minutes and ten seconds to make it a game at 28-23. Even though the lead that was never in doubt turned out to be never in doubt, the 4th quarter did become very interesting, and we all owe that to the poorly constructed electrical system in place at the Super Dome.
Two Refs, Four Eyes, No Penalty
The game came down to one play. After the Raven stalled the Niners drive, Kaepernick had a 4th and goal from the five-yard line. All they had to do was put it in for the touchdown and their comeback would be complete. Colin Kaepernick against Ray Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens’ defense to decide it – just the way it should be.
Ed Reed came free on a safety blitz and Kaepernick had no choice but to let the ball fly to the Michael Crabtree immediately in the corner of the end zone. There was a lot of hand-checking going on by both Crabtree and defensive back Jimmy Smith, and in the end the ball fell helplessly to the ground.
Could it have been a flag? Yes. Should it have been a flag? I would have had more of a problem had the refs felt it was their time to take the stage and make the final play about them. Let the players play and whoever wins, wins. That is exactly what the referees did in that situation, and for that I have to applaud their restraint. Plus, given where the ball landed on the white chalk, a strong case could be made for the throw falling under the purview of the “uncatchable ball” technicality. Good no-call in my opinion.
Joe Flacco, aka, Joey Bright-Lights
Anyone looking for a raise at work would probably love to walk in and slap the Lombardi trophy and the Super Bowl MVP down on their boss’s desk. “Start writing zeros until I’m satisfied Bobby,” is all you’d have to say – doesn’t even matter if your boss’s name is Bobby or not.
After Joe Flacco put up 287 yards and three touchdowns in Super Bowl XLVII, he is going to be in for a serious payday. Flacco also finished another impressive feat by going through the entire playoffs without throwing a single interception (11-0). Flacco made every throw he needed to, and now we can all sit back and wait for the influx of “Is Joe Flacco Elite?” columns sure to come our way.
While he still won’t be allowed to made direct eye-contact with Tom Brady or Peyton Manning at NFL functions, this nice playoff run certainly allows him to shake their hand, maybe even take a quick photo or two next to them. It’s too early to call him elite just yet, but no one can take Super Bowl MVP off his business cards.
John and Jim Harbaugh made some great decisions to get their teams to Super Bowl XLVII, but in the game itself, some of their moves where better than others.
John Harbaugh had the first head scratcher when he called for a fake field goal on 4th and 9. The play itself or the situation were both ripe for a fake, but asking your kicker to run 16 yards to pick up a first down is a huge gamble. The Ravens’ didn’t pick up the first down, but the Niners quickly went three-and-out, leading to a make-up Baltimore Ravens’ touchdown.
Jim Harbaugh’s day was not as good (obviously). Aside from timeout problems, the coach orchestrated a very weak last series of play calls near the goal line. With first-and-goal from the seven-yard line, the NIners ran once and threw three times – the one run being the only play to gain positive yards. In a situation where you know it is four-down territory, the 49ers could have used at least one more Frank Gore run to put the pressure on the Ravens’ defense. With third and fourth down from the five-yard line, everyone on the defense knows it is going to be a pass play.
The best call of the day by either coach came at the end of the game when John Harbaugh ordered his punter to run around in the end zone with 12 seconds left, before ultimately taking a safety. The play knocked eight seconds off of the clock, and effectively left the 49ers without a chance for a Hail Mary prayer to be answered.
A dangerously low amount of monkey-related spots highlighted a weak field of ads for this Super Bowl. Go-Daddy.com was the leader in the clubhouse early with their slightly too intimate close-up of super model Bar Refaeli locking lips with nerdy Jesse Heiman (Chuck, Old School) to show their company’s mix of sexy and techy.
Doritos came up really small this year after a string of strong Super Bowl performances. I couldn’t be the only one who realized their goat-4-sale bit seemed to be copied directly from the script pages of CBS’ hit comedy “How I Met Your Mother.”
The winner for best ad has to go to the NFL Network for their Leon Sandcastle commercial. An NFL legend’s attempt to make a comeback by putting on an afro wig and a fake mustache to reenter the NFL combine. “Kind of looks like an ugly Deon Sanders,” one announcer correctly pondered. In the end, Kansas City Chiefs’ fans should be very happy with their new defensive back next season. And judging by their 2-14 campaign in 2011, Leon Sandcastle probably would be a welcome addition.
It wasn’t the Black-Eye Peas (thank God), but Beyonce did not exactly wow us with her half-time performance either. No nipple-gate or lip-synching scandal emerging from this one, just a consistent reminder why pop music is rather mediocre as a genre.
I can never understand why the Super Bowl planners do not realize that rock bands that play instruments are built specifically to put on a live show. Pop singers cannot sound the same because their performance is not auto-tuned the same way it is on all of their albums. I get that the game is for the guys and the half-time show is for the girls, but it just seems odd to book someone who cannot possibly deliver on expectations simply because the medium of pop music itself is not built to be performed live.