Published January 31, 2013
Nobody asked me, but ...Drew Markol, Sports Network
After too long of a wait, the Super Bowl is in sight.And with it comes another chance to get a prediction wrong, something I've become very good at. This time (I hope) will be different.So, what are we going to see come Sunday evening besides salsa and ranch dip? Plenty of scoring.But most of that scoring is going to come from the San Francisco 49ers as they pound away with Frank Gore's legs and sling it all over the place with Colin Kaepernick's arm.The goal of the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC title game was to try to keep Kaepernick from running and the Falcons were pretty much able to do that. But Gore and Co. picked up the slack nicely to win in a wild comeback.What the 49ers have, really, on offense is a three-headed attack. When a team has a two-headed attack - meaning they can run it and throw it efficiently - they are really hard to beat.Give that team another head - the ability to run it, with Gore, throw it, with Kaepernick, and run it some more with Kaepernick - and good luck stopping them. Add in Michael Crabtree and tight end Vernon Davis, and the San Fran offense is just nasty. And fun to watch.And to think how much things would have been different if Peyton Manning ended up in San Francisco and not Denver.Remember, the Niners went after Manning hard and nearly nabbed him a year ago. Where would we be today if that had happened?Would San Francisco even be in the Super Bowl?Would Kaepernick even be a 49er?Makes for some interesting conversation, but back to the game at hand.Baltimore has its weapons, I love Joe Flacco and is any running back tougher than Ray Rice? But I don't trust the Ravens' leaky offensive line and they needed a miracle touchdown pass (thanks to botched coverage) to even reach the AFC title game.Simply put, too many things have to go right for Baltimore to win, and that rarely happens.As you might have noticed, we're not talking too much about defense here today because have you looked at the scores from the playoff games? Nobody seems to be able to stop anybody. Touchdown after touchdown. The last team with the ball wins; kind of like the NBA.Well, San Fran will play enough defense and the Ravens won't play much at all.That's all the Niners will ask and it will work out for them.I just see a supremely confident San Francisco team that will not fold.The huge test for the Niners came against the Packers in the divisional round and Kaepernick was electrifying.That win was the Super Bowl because the two best teams were playing.Yes, the Ravens went into Denver and went into New England and won. Great stuff. Unbelievable stuff. But their run is over.The bottom line will be the 49ers make it look easy. They start the scoring early and keep it going while the Ravens have no answer.Unfortunately, the only bad thing about the blowout is what it does for the Super Bowl. For years and years, we had bad Super Bowls after bad Super Bowls, but lately we've had a nice run of good games going down to the wire.That changes Sunday, although if you're a San Fran fan I'll doubt you'll mind very much.The final score: San Francisco 49ers 35, Baltimore Ravens 20 (and that 20 is thanks to a meaningless touchdown in fourth-quarter garbage time). And if you have a 5 and 0 in your Super Bowl block pool, you're welcome.This time, take it to the bank. The 49ers win in a rout. By at least 15 points (that's a rout in the playoffs). So enjoy the salsa and enjoy your winnings.Drew Markol has been a sportswriter and columnist for several Philadelphia- area newspapers for over 25 years.