By Jerrell Richardson
This is the Super Bowl. Every player on the field has dreamed about this exact moment, and it will take a major injury to prevent someone from playing. Between the two teams, 26 names are listed as having some sort of injury, but there is not a single player who is expected to sit this one out. However, it can’t be ignored that so many big name players are nursing some sort of injuries, and this could affect the game. This is not likely though as no Baltimore player was even limited in practice this week, and on the San Francisco side, the only two players unable to participate in full practice figure were done so more as a precaution then anything else.
Ravens In A Good Spot
Unless you have been under a rock you know Ray Lewis is banged up. The other big names of the wounded Ravens, are Terrell Suggs, who is getting healthier by the day, and Ed Reed who has been hampered with injuries all year. All in all though, Baltimore is ready for Super Bowl 47, health wise. The entire team was in full pads, and after an extra week to rest up, they are as fresh as they can be at this point in the season. The Ravens have the finish line in their sights and will be able to block out whatever pain they are in for 4 more quarters. The only way that injuries will affect Baltimore is if the players who are not 100% are a liability while on the field due to them not being at full strength, but an injured Lewis or Reed is still better then most.
All Eyes Will Be On 49er Pass Rush
For the first time this post season, Justin Smith is not a concern. He is still injured of course, but he is no longer a question mark. The team knows what he is going to do on Sunday, and how effective he will be. The questions injury wise heading into the finale are about the other Smith and Ahmad Brooks. Aldon Smith has been playing with an injured shoulder for weeks and has not been the sack machine he has shown to be in his short career. No player on the 49ers needed the break between the NFC Championship Game and the Super Bowl more then #99, and could lead to him making a splash in the biggest game of his life. The Baltimore offense is going to have to make a lot of plays through the air, and if back to his old self, then Aldon is going to make life difficult for Joe Flacco. The 49ers other real sack threat, Ahmad Brooks was also limited in practice with an injured shoulder, but he was taken out of drills more for precautions then anything else, and neither of the pass rushing specialists injuries will limit their effect against the Ravens.
May The Best Team Win
Neither team wants anything other then their opponent’s best to win this game. The Super Bowl has two physical, hard nosed teams squaring off, and although sporting various bumps and bruises, both the Ravens and 49ers have to be completely happy with their injury situation. It has been a long, injury plagued season for both of them and to not only be in this game, but to have everyone on the active roster available is all they could ask for.
San Francisco 49ers
Linebacker: Ahmad Brooks–Shoulder
Linebacker: Aldon Smith-Shoulder
Linebacker: NaVorro Bowman–Shoulder
Cornerback: Tarell Brown–Shoulder
Tight End: Garrett Celek–Foot
Running Back: Frank Gore–Shoulder, ankle
Linebacker: Clark Haggans–Shoulder
Guard: Mike Iupati–Shoulder
Running Back: LaMichael James–Finger
Fullback: Bruce Miller–Shoulder
Defensive Tackle: Justin Smith–Elbow, triceps
Linebacker: Patrick Willis–Shoulder
Wide Receiver: Tandon Doss–Ankle
Linebacker: Dannell Ellerbe–Toe, back
Cornerback: Asa Jackson–Thigh
Running Back: Vonta Leach–Knee, ankle
Linebacker: Ray Lewis–Triceps
Linebacker: Albert McClellan–Shoulder
Defensive End: Pernell McPhee–Thigh
Defensive Tackle: Haloti Ngata–Knee
Running Back: Bernard Pierce–Knee, thigh
Tight End: Dennis Pitta–Thigh
Wide Receiver: David Reed–Thigh
Safety: Ed Reed–Shoulder
Cornerback: Jimmy Smith–Abdomen
Linebacker: Terrell Suggs–Achilles, biceps
For more Super Bowl content and the latest 49er news, see CBS Sports San Francisco.
Jerrell Richardson is a Bay Area native who due to a college career at San Diego State University has grown an appreciation for all things sports related in California. His heart will always remain in San Francisco though where he currently resides and covers everything from the San Francisco 49ers and Giants to the San Jose Sharks and California Bears Baseball team. His work can be found on Examiner.com.