words // Brandon Richard
With 20 weeks of NFL football now in the books, we finally have our two Super Bowl XLVII participants. On Sunday, February 3, the AFC’s Baltimore Ravens will take on the NFC’s San Francisco 49ers at the Superdome in New Orleans.
To get there, the Baltimore Ravens beat the odds, traveling to Foxborough and erasing a halftime deficit to upset Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. Often criticized Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco shined on the big stage, completing 21 of his 36 passes for 240 yards and three touchdowns. On the receiving end of two of those passes was Anquan Boldin, who caught 5 balls for 60 yards. However, enough can’t be said about the storied Ravens defense, which limited New England’s top-ranked offense to 13 total points and forced three second half turnovers. Prior to Sunday, Brady was a perfect 67-0 when the Patriots held a halftime lead at home.
Also overcoming a deficit on Sunday was the San Francisco 49ers, who trailed by as much as 17 points in their NFC Championship match-up against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. Once again, rookie quarterback Colin Kaepernick showed great poise, leading a rally for the ages. Kap went 16 for 21 and 233 yards, including a touchdown pass to Vernon Davis before the half. Just like the Ravens, the Niners pitched a highly impressive second half shutout and running back Frank Gore punched in two ground TDs to give San Francisco the win and a trip to New Orleans.
In two weeks, brothers will coach against one another in the Super Bowl for the very first time — but the storylines don’t end there. Ray Lewis and Ed Reed may be playing in the final games of their Hall of Fame careers. Randy Moss has been relatively quiet all season, but his leadership may help the Niners win and land him the first Super Bowl ring of his legendary career. Speaking of legendary, there’s the 49ers franchise, which is seeking a record-tying sixth Super Bowl win.
images courtesy of Yahoo
Joe Flacco drops back in the Nike Lunar Superbad Pro.
Tom Brady passes in custom turf Under Armour football cleats.
Bernard Pierce drags Rob Ninkovich in the Under Armour Highlight.
Wes Welker makes a catch in the Nike Vapor Talon Elite Low.
Ed Reed flies in to make a tackle wearing Nitro III Under Armour football cleats.
Stevan Ridley runs through a pile in the Under Armour Nitro Diablo.
The Baltimore Ravens celebrate in the New Era NFL Conference Champions Cap.
Colin Kaepernick passes in the Nike Vapor Talon Elite 3/4.
Roddy White extends to make a grab in custom Reebok football cleats.
Michael Crabtree runs after making a catch in Retro 9 Jordan football cleats.
Matt Ryan eyes a target in the Nike Alpha Talon Elite 3/4.
Tony Gonzalez with perhaps his final “slam dunk” in Zoom Flyposite Nike football cleats.
Frank Gore high-steps into the endzone wearing the adidas adizero 5-Star Low.
Frank Gore holds up his Nike NFL Conference Champ T-Shirt.