Here we go:
San Francisco – Atlanta: A lot of times, broadcasters will say “Brady versus Manning”, and stuff like that. It isn’t true. It’s Brady versus the other team’s defense and Manning versus the other team’s defense. MATCHUPS win/lose games, not “quarterback versus quarterback.” In that light, San Francisco is playing Atlanta in Atlanta. In my opinion, Atlanta is extremely fortunate to be playing in this game. After gaining a 20-0 lead and looking unbeatable, they not only allowed Seattle to catch up, but pass them. The Seahawks were a bad timeout away from winning that game.
Says here, San Francisco doesn’t call that time out. Says here San Francisco is better offensively than Atlanta’s defense and their defense is better than Atlanta’s offense. It’s a terrible matchup for Atlanta. The only advantages Atlanta has are at kicker and home field advantage. Atlanta has to be physical to win, but they are playing what might be the most physical team in football. Look for one half of Harbaugh Bowl I to make it to the Super Bowl. Which, as much as I dislike the niners, is tough but this niners team is way, way different than the niners in the Bill Walsh years. Those 1980’s – 1990 niners teams were arguably the most arrogant franchise ever. Interesting that Eddie DeCriminalo is up for the Hall-of-Fame? Didn’t he have to be a rat to get out of going to prison for bribing a governor?
Baltimore – New England: New England, on the other hand, is looking at history. Tom Brady and the Patriots have assembled something of a running game. They are a better team than the one that played Baltimore in last year’s AFC Championship Game. Meanwhile, Baltimore is playing in back-to-back Championship Games. How many times does a team get a do-over with a chance to win the Super Bowl?
New England might be fooling me. They may still not be able to get stops when it needs them. Baltimore might be better than I think, but the reality is that team has to be drained after winning a home playoff game and a road game in Denver that went into overtime. Their defense looks beat up and particularly vulnerable. No way Baltimore should be in this game; they gave up 35 points to a sub-par Peyton Manning and only scored on a unbelievable 70-yarder with under a minute left. Still, I think New England wins this game. They just seem to be in better shape for the game.
San Francisco versus New England in Super Bowl 47