Super Bowl 2013 Predictions: Why the 49ers Will Beat the Ravens


Jan 20, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree (15) carries the ball and tries to escape the tackle by Atlanta Falcons strong safety William Moore (25) during the fourth quarter in the NFC Championship game at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

The Super Bowl, Super Baugh, or the Bro Bowl will be decided not just by the coaches – though there are two great ones in the final game – but by the personnel that make up the teams.

Sorry Baltimore Ravens fans, but here’s why the San Francisco 49ers are going to beat your team:

Offensive Line

  • One of the major reasons that Colin Kaepernick has been able to do so well after taking over for Alex Smith is because of the fantastic play of San Fran’s offensive line.  The big guys up front are able to bully, pull, and pass block better than most teams and they will show it against Baltimore.  Baltimore’s interior defensive linemen are good, but the Niners have been able to push up the middle very effectively throughout the year.

Michael Crabtree

  • Michael Crabtree had a ridiculously efficient season in 2012.  It has only gotten better since Kaepernick took over at quarterback.  Roughly half of Crabtree’s total yards for the season came after the catch and he will continue that against Baltimore.  Without Crabtree, Kaepernick’s options dwindle down and Vernon Davis has to pick up a significant part of that burden.  With Crabtree, the defense is more spread out and must respect his ability to break free.  Randy Moss may be the distraction, but Crabtree is the real receiving force and his impact will be felt.

Run Defense

  • The Niners boast a formidable rush defense. Fourth in the league during the regular season, the rushing defense sets up the pass defense.  The Ravens will have to beat the Niners through the air, and that’s the San Fran way wants it.  Joe Flacco plays much worse under pressure (45.3% complete) and when the Niners can focus on the pass it will likely result in big pressure plays from guys like Aldon Smith.  The Ravens may not be able to do anything to stop the run defense from making them one-dimensional.