Early San Francisco penalties allowed Baltimore to grab a quick touchdown lead. On the opening play of the Super Bowl, the Niners committed an illegal formation penalty that negated a first-down pass to Vernon Davis. San Francisco went three-and-out from there. Baltimore took their first drive into the Niners’ red zone and appeared to be stopped on a third down, but a defender had jumped offside, giving the Ravens another play, which they parlayed into a Joe Flacco touchdown pass to Anquan Boldin.
The Niners momentarily stopped tripping over their own dicks long enough to put together a scoring drive, though it stalled out in the red zone with a third down sack by Paul Kruger. David Akers actually hit a field goal and was sparred being killed in front of hundreds of millions of people by his head coach. Baltimore was stopped on their next drive and the Niners were driving again, mostly exploited the tired, crying husk of Ray Lewis, who seems to be covering every receiver who gets the ball when the Niners have possession.
San Francisco was on the verge of grabbing the lead when LaMichael James fumbled at the Baltimore 30. The Ravens offense made the next drive look pretty easy, with Joe Flacco’s second touchdown pass going to Dennis Pitta to give the Ravens a 14-3 lead.
Colin Kaepernick responded by Sex Cannoning a ball to Ed Reed, who naturally was lauded for being a ballhawk who catches passes thrown 10 yards away from any receiver. Cary Williams shoved a ref in the melee after the play, but was allowed to stay in the game for some reason. Justin Tucker lined up for field goal to push the Baltimore lead to 17-3, but John Harbaugh would rather have his kicker try to pick up nine yards. Folks are split on whether the call was dumb. Tucker nearly got it, but depending on your kicker to get that many yards strikes me as foolish, but gotta go for the kill, I guess.
Didn’t matter much, as San Francisco went three-and-out and the Ravens got another touchdown when early Least candidate Chris Culliver bit on a double move, then neglected to touch Jacoby Jones on the ground after he caught the bomb. San Francisco had a chance to cut into the lead before, but Kaepernick got tentative on a 3rd down in the red zone and basically just flumped on the ground. Ray Lewis got credit for a sack, because of course he did.