As we bid adieu to the estimated 150,000 Super-Gras visitors we had in town to witness the Baltimore Ravens win a 34-31 thriller over the San Francisco 49ers, I thought I'd share some of my game thoughts with you.
First of all, the 34 minute power outage in the 3rd quarter. While there is a great wailing and gnashing of teeth trying to figure out exactly what happened, it was a blessing in disguise. The Ravens had just gone up 28-6 on the record tying 108 yard second half kickoff return for touchdown by Jacoby Jones. I think it's a game which could have turned into a blowout win for the Ravens. Never good for the viewer. But, I believe the delay allowed the 49ers to regain their composure and helped get them back in the game. It turns out the game came pretty much down to the wire, and one fans will be talking about for some time to come.
Next, there is the Harbaugh angle. John beats Jim. Older sibling trumps the younger. As a parent, I can't imagine what was going through their parents', Jack and Jackie's minds, up in Commissioner Roger Goodell's box. How does one cheer for either son in the game? Both kids told their parents during the week to just enjoy the game. From the mouths of babes. Who wouldn't be proud to have both of their sons coaching in the sports grandest spectacle?
I am also tickled to death for Ravens offensive coordinator Jimmy Caldwell. He was hired by John Harbaugh late in the season to restore order on the offensive side of the football. Caldwell, who has a warm spot in my heart being an Iowa guy, got the muddy end of the stick while serving as head coach of the Colts. But, as the Ravens offensive coordinator, Caldwell has proven his worth, and earned his hardware.
Were there really any losers in the game? Not really. Consider the LOSERS share, per player, was $44,000.00. The winners took home $88,000.00 apiece. And, think of the businesses who made out big. The National Chicken Council says Americans consumed an estimated 1.23 billion chicken wings Sunday. 7.5 million new televisions were purchased for the game and the estimated 180 million viewers who tuned in to the event. Of the 59,000 hotel rooms in and around new Orleans, all were virtually sold out. Positive economic impact for New Orleans proper? Around $432-million and change.