Another year, another Super Bowl that doesn’t feature the
Eagles, but at least we will get something we haven’t seen for awhile. The last
time either the 49ers or Ravens were competing to win a world championship was
over 10 years ago back in 2001, while this is the first meeting between the two
franchises in Super Bowl history.
Just to put in perspective how long it has been since San
Francisco or Baltimore had teams standing on pro football’s biggest stage, Ravens
middle linebacker Ray Lewis is the only player on either roster who also made
his team’s last Super Bowl appearance. Lewis of course has announced he will
retire at season’s end.
Lewis was named Super Bowl MVP 12 years ago, the Ravens’
only appearance and victory in Super Bowl history. The 49ers are 5-0 in the big
game, but last won it all after their ’94 campaign.
Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this year’s event is
no matter what happens, one squad’s starting quarterback will be hoisting the
Lombardi Trophy for the first time. Either first-year starter Colin Kaepernick or
Audubon, New Jersey native Joe Flacco will be joining a club of active passers
that includes Tom Brady, both Manning brothers, Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, and
Ben Roethlisberger who have picked up their hardware.
The question is who, if anybody, will you be rooting for when this one kicks off 13 days from now?
San Francisco certainly had their glory days, but since then
experienced one of the worse down periods of any NFL franchise in recent history.
Most of the guys on that roster stuck with the Niners through some really hard
Baltimore has the local tie-in, especially with
Flacco, but also head coach John Harbaugh who was an assistant coach with the
Eagles for a decade. Still, many fans detest future first-ballot Hall-of-Famer
Lewis for his involvement in a double homicide over a decade ago, to which he
received the lesser charge of obstructing justice.
We sense there will be plenty of indifference, as there
always is and generally should be. Again though, at least it’s fresh. Feel free
to offer your reactions and instant predictions below.
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