NFL

49ers, Ravens advance to Super Bowl XLVII

Staff Writer
Plaquemine Post South
Jim Harbaugh and John Harbaugh

NEW YORK - Super Bowl XLVII comes custom-built with one of the greatest storylines ever: Jim Harbaugh vs. John Harbaugh. Brother against brother. Lombardi Trophy at stake.

Jim didn't have much to say about the possibility of the matchup after the San Francisco 49ers took care of business in Sunday's early game against the Atlanta Falcons. John spoke openly about it after the Baltimore Ravens knocked off the New England Patriots.

“I don't know if we had a dream this big,” Harbaugh said. “We had a few dreams, we had a few fights. We had a few arguments. We will try to stay out of that business. We'll let the two teams duke it out as much as possible.”

The Ravens and 49ers met during the 2011 season, a 16-6 Baltimore win on Thanksgiving night.

San Francisco is headed back to the Super Bowl because they can win any style of game. Sunday, they showed they can be comeback artists when needed.

The 49ers overcame a 17-point deficit to win 28-24 in the NFC Championship Game over the Atlanta Falcons.

San Francisco's defense couldn't stop anything in the first half but the 49ers turned up the defensive heat after halftime, holding the Falcons scoreless.

One week after Colin Kaepernick ran wild against the Green Bay Packers, he mostly handed off Sunday. Frank Gore and LaMichael James continued to gash the Falcons and Kaepernick hit Atlanta vertically again and again with passes up the seam to tight end Vernon Davis.

The Ravens scored 21 unanswered points in the second half Sunday at Gillette Stadium, knocking off the defending AFC champions with a 28-13 win.

Joe Flacco keeps building his reputation, playing another outstanding game in difficult conditions. The Ravens' quarterback finished 21-of-36 passing with three touchdowns and no interceptions. He took down Peyton Manning and Tom Brady in back-to-back weeks, outplaying both future Hall of Famers in their own buildings.

Flacco got help from a Ravens defense led by retiring linebacker Ray Lewis that grew tougher as the moment grew bigger.

So now it's set. The Harbaugh Bowl. Lewis' final game played on the sport's greatest stage. Not too bad.