We are mere hours away from watching the Ravens perform on the biggest stage in football.
After all of the hard work put into the 2012 season, the draft, OTA’s, mini camps, training camps, preseason, the regular season and the playoffs, everything leads to this one point, this one night where everything you have in your body and soul is put on the field.
Tonight one team will be crowned World Champions and one team won’t even be remembered. There is no getting around that.
The excitement has been in the air for weeks. I just arrived back in Maryland after spending a few days in Greenville, NC home to my Alma Mater East Carolina University. And the city was full of purple Raven pride as one of their own Vonta Leach is in the Super Bowl. And ECU is hoping that Leach becomes the 5th Pirate ever to lift the Lombardi trophy.
Greenville is just one of the many cities around the country that will be decked out in purple tonight and chanting “Ohhhh,Oh, Oh, Oh, Ohhhh, Oh…”
After representing Ravens Nation in NC I spent five hours driving through rain, wind and snow listening to Super Bowl talk radio the entire drive. The countless predictions and analyzing all will come to a head tonight as people are either proven wrong or right.
The main deciding factor that I have heard is how each offensive line will be able to protect their respective QB’s and while I agree that the battle in the trenches will be a huge factor in the outcome of this game I have another opinion.
I think that this game will fall on the shoulders of the linebackers and how they are able to cover the tight ends. In particular I will have my focus on the matchup between Dennis Pitta and Patrick Willis. I see Pitta having a huge game making some tough catches in the middle of the field to move the chains. And if he is able to make some catches with just a little space we know that he has the ability pick up key yards after the catch.
And outside of the tight ends while I think that the Ravens will give Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce the ball over 30 times in this game; I believe that Rice will be a bigger factor on the receiving end. Keep your eyes peeled for Rice covered one on one with a linebacker, followed by the “Hey Diddle Diddle Ray Rice Up the Middle.” If Rice is able to be the star we know he is and the Ravens come away with the victory he could have a chance for MVP honors.
On the other side of the ball, I see the quiet Ed Reed breaking the all time playoff interception record. The rookie Colin Kaepernick hasn’t faced a ball hawk like the future Hall of Famer and I think if he hesitates on any of his throws Ravens Nation will be screaming “Reeeeeeeed” in unison.
I just can’t bet against the Ravens with their experience and knowledge not to mention the hard hitting from the likes of Bernard “Bone Crusher” Pollard. I believe the Ravens will outsmart the 49er’s when push comes to shove.
This is the team that knocked off two QB’s and one head coach that have already cemented their NFL legacies. And those two teams were picked by almost the entire country to not only represent the AFC in the Championship game but also the winner in that game was supposed to go on and win the Super Bowl.
Conventional wisdom tells you that the team who knocked both of these teams out should be able to conquer the final and greatest win of the year.
The stage is set and we are ready to watch the thousands of camera flashes going off telling us that Super Bowl XLVII is underway.
It’s time to prove all of the haters wrong and to show the entire country what it means to be a TEAM.