Appearing on the Rich Eisen Podcast on Thursday, San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree revealed for the first time what exactly happened on the offenses fourth down play in the Super Bowl loss to the Baltimore Ravens.
Crabtree said right before the final play on offense for the Niners, he couldn’t see because of a helmet-to-helmet hit (picture above) he took from Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith on the previous play.
He (Smith) hit me, he hit me all in the face. But I’m not tripping. I’m not the one to whine about nothing, but he hit me all in the face and I really couldn’t see, you know what I’m saying, after he hit me.
The 49ers offense was facing a 3rd-and-goal from the Ravens five-yard line in the final two minutes of the game. San Francisco was down 34-29 at the time and the offense was in desperate need of scoring a touchdown to regain the lead. After two straight passes to Crabtree, Colin Kaepernick went to Crabtree again on the fateful fourth down. However, by that time Crabs said his vision had returned and it had no effect on his performance on the final play. Crabtree said:
Then it just came back… it’s not concussion-like. After you get hit in football — you’re going to get hit and you’re going to feel it. And it’s going to feel like you can’t see. It’s going to feel intense, you know what I’m saying? But it snapped back. It happens all the time in football.
Like many of the 49ers Faithful after the Super Bowl loss, Crabtree said he felt “sad” but also that the loss is “nothing but motivation to come back next year and do my thing.”
Another intriguing part of the interview was Crabtree dishing on the split in the locker-room after Alex Smith was replaced as the starting quarterback by Kaepernick.
You had guys on Alex Smith’s side, guys on Colin Kaepernick’s side. I was on the winning side. You can’t beat that. The guy was hot, that’s no secret. Kap was hot.
I hate to talk about it. But you had the starting quarterback and, a couple games later, he’s the starting scout-team quarterback. He’s taking all the snaps with the scout team, so that was kind of crazy to see. Alex Smith is a good guy, man. He’s been through a lot being a San Francisco 49er. He went through all the boos, the winning … he’d been through so much. I wish him success with the Chiefs.
Click HERE to listen to the full interview.