TV & Fury banter about the Super Bowl

Posted: February 4, 2013 by shawnfury in Uncategorized
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FURY: Well.

For awhile there it looked like the most exciting part of the night was going to be Beyonce and a power outage. In fact, those two things might have still been the most exciting parts of the night but the Super Bowl itself turned out pretty well.

It’s fun watching a game like that when you have no rooting interest, although by the end I think I was pulling for the Niners. You get to enjoy the great plays and bizarre decisions without worrying that your heart is going to be ripped out at the same time. The 49ers really hurt themselves a few times. Start with the first play of the game, an illegal formation penalty that negated a long gain. You’re preparing two weeks for the game — and do coaches still script their first 15 plays or did that go out? — and you line up incorrectly? Then a penalty gave Baltimore another chance after the Niners had stopped the Ravens on their first drive. Flacco threw a TD. The big fumble by James. Then, finally, the strange playcalling from the 5-yard line.

My first complaint: The player intros. Which are no longer player intros. Thanks to the 2001 Patriots the teams now all come out together, because, you know, they’re a TEAM! Football! Team game! The NFL dictates rules about players socks. But they can’t make teams get introduced? Imagine the ’90s Bulls pulling this and instead of getting the greatest intros ever with “Your Chicago Bulls,” and the lights and music and Ray Clay, we get Jordan and Pippen going, “Guys, no. Kill the lights. Scott Williams and Will Perdue, we’re all being introduced as one!”


TV: What’s not to get? I mean, it’s not like NFL players like to draw attention to themselves. Wait …

The biggest revelation from my viewing: That I probably won’t really get to watch another Super Bowl for 18 years. That’s when the last of my four kids will (maybe) be out of the house. We had to institute a no iPad policy in the opening minutes because the competing noise was becoming unbearable. I changed countless diapers – the acrid smell of baby poop overpowered anything we cooked – and missed several plays.

That said, the last play call was putrid. The 49ers had three chances to cover a total of five yards to win the Super Bowl. They had at their disposal a massive and sometimes dominant offensive line, two running backs with different assets, a beastly tight ends, good receivers and – most of all – a massive, fast, young quarterback. And they used their last bullet on a one-option play – a fade to averaged-sized Michael Crabtree. Yes, the Ravens blitzed as the Niners expected, but there HAS to be a better way to go than that.

Nonetheless, Baltimore should have won. Not because God wanted them to, as Ray Lewis opined, but because they were rolling when the lights went out. For the outcome to have changed on a power outage would have been the worst thing to happen to the NFL in a season filled with regrettable moments.

Cousin Sal came through with one of the better stabbing jokes of the night.

Cousin Sal came through with one of the better stabbing jokes of the night.

FURY: I’m going to disagree slightly on the power outage. These teams were even. We thought that going in and the end result proved it. It’s impossible to prove, but I think San Francisco would have eventually started rolling even if the lights stay on (just as it’s impossible to prove the outage is what deflated the Ravens). Immediately after the outage, the Niners failed on 3rd and long and punted. No doubt it came at a better time for the Niners; I just think they would have turned it around eventually anyway. But perhaps not so dramatically.

The worst part of the outage was it gave us 30 more minutes of the CBS studio crew. My favorite part was Bill Cowher telling Jim Harbaugh he should think about sitting Kaepernick for Alex Smith. It was a ludicrous statement even before Kaepernick started dominating in the second half. Yeah, he had the bad INT in the first half but he wasn’t the one giving up the long pass plays to Flacco and the Ravens. Lucky for the Niners, Harbaugh ignored the advice.

Flacco obviously deserved his MVP. An incredible postseason that was as good as anything by legends like Brady and Montana. He does seem to get away with an inordinate number of lob passes — against the Patriots and in the Super Bowl — but he’s a great quarterback.

Biggest upset for me: I somehow fought off the omnipresent KFC Game Day Bucket Go Boom ads and did not walk up to my local restaurant for a big bucket of chicken.

TV: I was almost impressed with CBS in that sense that I can’t believe it continues to be so lackluster and/or downright bad despite having NFL rights on and off for a long time.

I, too, missed the KFC commercial. The first time I saw it, I failed to recognize the magnificence of the catchphrase because I thought the girl saying it was an actress from the Hannah Montana TV show. And, yes, I miss that show.

Related note: Can’t say too many commercials stuck with me from this year’s game. I appreciated the cross-dressing Doritos bit as the father of three daughters. And the Go Daddy makeout scene will be hard to forget because it prompted my 9-year-old to ask, “Why did it sound like that when they were kissing?” Yes, Go Daddy, why did it have to sound like that? Gross.

There’s no doubt that Twitter has stolen the show away from the commercials when it comes to comedy bang for the buck. I wish I had kept better track of all the tweets that made me LOL. And I really did LOL to the point that my Twitter-less wife got after me for not sharing the jokes quickly enough. Beyonce provided plenty of good material, although most of it was largely the same and largely, ahem, primal.

FURY: Agreed on the ads. Thought it was interesting that the Paul Harvey farmers ad was the big hit of the night for the Midwesterners on Twitter. It was good, although it’s amusing that for a million dollar ad, some ad guy came up with the idea of using an old Paul Harvey speech from 30 years ago. Start digging through the archives, Madison Avenue.

What did we think of the Harbaugh coverage during the game? I don’t think it was overdone, actually. I mean, you have to talk about it. They’re brothers, it’s pretty outrageous that they were facing off in the Super Bowl. Jim had his typical meltdowns and the pleading for a holding call (which I thought probably was holding but am fine with no flag) was especially epic. John, though, had one of the stranger outbursts as he chewed out the guy in a suit with the walkie talkie during the power outage. What could the guy have said that offended him so much? Actually the NFL’s probably lucky the outage occurred when it did. Imagine that happening before San Francisco’s final 4th down play. Or in the middle of Jones’ long kickoff return. It destroyed the rhythm of the game but coming right after halftime was as lucky as the NFL could get in that situation.

TV: The Harbaugh stuff seemed tastefully done, for the most part. I was surprised that the parents made themselves so available during the week – I wondered if they would perhaps try to avoid it. Good on them for embracing the situation. It had to have gotten old to retell the “Who’s got it better than us?” story 873,219 times.

It’ll be interesting to see if there’s another Harbaugh Bowl. Both are relatively young, unquestionably bright and have plenty of important pieces in place, namely their quarterbacks. That is, if we feel comfortable classifying Flacco as an elite QB and are OK assuming that Kaepernick will continue to develop. Regardless, both played key roles in an unforgettable game. Really, for all the classic Super Bowls of late this has to be near the top when you consider the pregame storylines (Harbaughs, Lewis), the wild momentum swings, the halftime show, the power outage and the goal-line stand to clinch.

Only the NFL could manage to throw a party like that and make everyone forget (at least for a few hours) the tumult of the season.

  1. The Cutter says:

    The Super Bowl definitely becomes different once you have kids. My wife and I used to host a Super Bowl party every year. While I can’t say the parties were epic, they were a pretty good time, and people kept coming back.

    Compare that to last night, I watched the first quarter alone in my bedroom because my daughter was finishing up Princess and the Frog on the big screen.

    I thought the ads sucked. (Taking the opportunity for a cheap self-plug) I review TV commercials at and I can’t think of one standout ad that I want to review today.

  2. Rich Jensen says:

    As you know, Terry, I watched Super Bowl 32 (commercials, half time show, and everything) with a friend instead of the Harbowl. Why? Because I don’t like Jim Harbaugh, I don’t like Ray Lewis, I don’t like Bryant McKinnie, and I kind of don’t like John Harbaugh. Having suffered through the “should I root for the Packers, or should I root for the guy who skated on a rape charge” Super Bowl, I vowed to never watch another Super Bowl where I couldn’t root *for* or *against* one team in particular.

    It was a blast.

    And we got to see the Harbaugh meltdown over the defensive holding call (methinks the ref refused to throw a flag because both players were committing penalties simultaneously, but whatever). And I have my doubts about the future of both Kaepernick and Jim Harbaugh. Harbaugh because he’s too ruthless, and Kaepernick because teams are starting to figure him out. “Unusual” quarterbacks seem to have a short shelf-life in the NFL.

  3. shawnfury says:

    Who knows about Kaepernick’s future, but I don’t know about teams figuring him out.

    QB rating by game, regular season through Super Bowl:
    133, 90, 83, 100, 108, 72, 114, 91, 127.7, 91.7

    Rushing: 10, 27, 85, 63, 28, 31, 5, 181, 21, 62

    Plus, his last two games he was, without question, the driving force behind completing the greatest comeback in NFC championship history and nearly pulled off the best comeback in Super Bowl history.

    We could say maybe teams will figure him out when they see more of him, but I think it’s just as viable to say, he’s simply going to get better and better the more experience he gets. And unusual quarterbacks might have short shelf life but how many of those guys have led their teams to the Super Bowl? I just don’t see anything that indicates he’ll be a flash in the pan.

    He struggled in the red zone yesterday but I don’t think that’s enough to indict his entire future; if anything it was more the playcalling. I do know I’d prefer his unusualness over, say, a fellow 2011 draftmate — Christian Ponder.

    • Rich Jensen says:

      Oh, the Ponder/Kaepernick debate isn’t a debate at all.

      But I wonder if Kaerpnick puts the 49ers in the SB if he’s the QB from the first week on, or if it’s his second year…

      And in fairness, regarding those major comebacks, it’s as true that Kaepernick was also the QB when they got into those holes.

      I mean the guy seems like he’ll play 10+ years in the NFL, but I just have my doubts that he will be a HOF caliber QB. So few are, and so few QBs that start off this fast are able to sustain that momentum after defensive staff spend six months analyzing every frame of his performance.

  4. Rich Jensen says:

    Yeah, when I said ‘short shelf life’, I meant as media darlings. Vick’ll be around until he’s well past 35, IMO. Not the best choice of words on my part.

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