NEW ORLEANS --- There have been more exciting Super Bowls than Sunday’s, but I cannot remember a more bizarre championship game. Certainly, there’s never been one delayed by a 35-minute blackout.
Maybe they can follow with a whiteout in New York next year.
On to some stuff:
--- Everyone seems to be declaring now that Joe Flacco is an “elite” quarterback, as if he just ascended into that rarified atmosphere after winning one Super Bowl, that puts him on a par with Trent Dilfer. It certainly lifts his status, whether it’s elite or just plain good. He also has something that Ben Roethlisberger does not, a Super Bowl MVP, although Ben deserved it over Santonio Holmes.
--- Jim Harbaugh can complain all he wants about the officiating, but he and his staff blew it for those calls after they got to first down at the seven near the end. He has one of the great mobile quarterbacks in the league, one who earlier easily ran for a touchdown, and he did not once use an option down there.
--- What looked like holding or pass interference on fourth down actually was a good no-call. That ball wasn’t catchable anyway.
--- Does this Super Bowl victory mean the Ravens are now head and shoulders above the rest in the AFC North, or does it show just how close the Steelers remain competitively to Baltimore after they split another close series this season? Neither, I would guess. The Steelers went to the Super Bowl after the 2010 season, barely beating out Baltimore for the division title. They tied Baltimore in 2011 at 12-4 but the Ravens earned the tiebreaker and the Steelers lost in Denver.
--- Baltimore was very lucky. The Ravens swooned near the end of the season and finished 10-6, blowing a seed. They should have lost in Denver. They nearly had the biggest collapse in a Super Bowl ever, which would have gone down for the ages. But they did not, and they will be remembered simply as a championship team.
--- It used to be, you had to earn one of the top two seeds to win a Super Bowl. The Steelers began a new trend in 2005 and now the New York Giants (twice), Green Bay Packers and Baltimore Ravens have followed with a new way to do it.
--- Jacoby Jones easily could have been MVP of last night’s game but it wasn’t close. All Jones did was score on a 56-yard reception and a 108-yard kickoff return.
--- John Harbaugh certainly is unconventional. You may recall the two-point conversion he ran against the Steelers two years ago. But running a fake field goal with an 11-point lead and needing 9 yards for a first down was ludicrous. Kick the 32-yarder and go up by 14.
--- After watching Ray Lewis play Sunday, it’s a good time for him to retire. It was obvious for awhile that San Fran’s gameplan was to use tight end Vernon Davis to go right at Lewis and it was working. Lewis could not cover him. He also had nothing to do with that final goalline stand.
--- That 49ers secondary made the Steelers secondary look like their 1970s version.
--- John Harbaugh was shown screaming on the sideline after the lights came back on at Mike Kensil, the NFL’s vice president of game operations. It wasn’t Kensil’s fault but do you mean that someone, somewhere in the NFL or in New Orleans could not determine the amount of electricity that was needed for a Super Bowl?
--- And, no, I have no idea what they would have done had the lights not come back on. They might have had to finish it up tonight. And if the ratings were great on both nights, it might have prompted the NFL to play future Super Bowls over two days instead of one.
--- LaMarr Woodley’s comment on Joe Flacco GETTING to the Super Bowl will now go down in infamy: “That’s not going to happen in this lifetime.’’
--- If an ESPN broadcaster had done what Ray Lewis was convicted of doing 12 years ago – obstruction of justice – they would have fired him on the spot. Instead, ESPN has hired Ray Lewis.
--- That’s it. Long day, long flight with a 2 ½-hour layover in Houston. You can’t get to Pittsburgh directly anymore.
--- Chat tomorrow, 1:30 p.m.
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