During the course of the Baltimore Ravens’ 2012 season, they managed to have a player shine to the mist of despair.
Cornerback Corey Graham filled the void left by defensive back Lardarius Webb, who had his season ended due to a torn ACL in Week 6 against the Dallas Cowboys. Running back Ray Rice’s remarkable dump pass to dash for 29 yards to get the first down; to put the Ravens in a winning situation against the San Diego Chargers in Week 12. And of course, wide receiver Jacoby Jones’ 70 yards touchdown catch in the AFC Divisional Round against the Denver Broncos with less than a minute left in regulation.
Against the 49ers, who will be the most complete team the Ravens will face this season, Baltimore will need a few more outputs from non-household names to pull off a Super Bowl victory.
CB Cary Williams
Williams has been picked on by opposing quarterbacks all season, and was labeled as the weak spot in the Ravens’ defensive chain. Since Week 4 against the Cleveland Browns when he got his first NFL career interception for a touchdown, Williams started to settle down. With his confidence lifted due to his growing pains, Williams must be ready to get challenged again against better receivers in Michael Crabtree and Randy Moss.
FB Vonta Leach
The Pro Bowl fullback will be ready as he brings his intensity every game. He must be prepared for a 49ers’ defense that will bring their intensity for four quarters, and not back down.
LB Courtney Upshaw
Upshaw must continue to be discipline in this matchup and not bite on the option reads that will come his way. He has improved at staying home since the beginning of the season, but against an offense that presents many options, the former Alabama team captain needs to stay focus.
WR Jacoby Jones
Field positioning will be extremely important because both defenses will not give up many yards. Jones has not delivered a huge play on special teams for a minute. He is primed to deliver on Sunday to help cut some pressure off the Ravens’ offense so they don’t have to sustain long drives through the contest.
K Justin Tucker
The kicking game will be essential for the Ravens and the rookie kicker from Texas must be money Sunday, like he has been all season.