Super Bowl 2013 Prep: 49ers Players to Know
The epic year for San Francisco sports continues! If the 49ers succeed this Sunday, they'll become the second team in NFL history with 6 Super Bowl wins (sharing the honor with the Steelers). The 49ers have never been to a Super Bowl and lost (knock on wood!), so that's pretty exciting.
Along with San Francisco's #QuestForSix, there's a much hyped subplot involving the Harbaugh brothers. Dubbed the "Har-Bowl" or "Brother Bowl", this is the first time in history that a pair of brothers are meeting in the Super Bowl as opposing head coaches.
Even if you're not a huge sports fan, there's no reason you can't fully enjoy Super Bowl Sunday like any diehard fan. Familiarize yourself with the San Francisco 49er's superstar players ahead of time and you'll be prepared to cheer with confidence for your hometown team.
Patrick Willis: Inside Linebacker, #52
Widely considered the best linebacker in the NFL today, Willis has been a Pro Bowler every year since he entered the league. He's ferocious, explosive, and so much fun to watch.
Navarro Bowman: Inside Linebacker, #53
Don't be confused between Bowman (number 53) and Willis (number 52). They're both about the same size and weight, and side by side, they make up one formidable defensive duo. Together, they rush the passer, defend the pass, and stop runs as well as any two-man team in the NFL.
Justin Smith: Defensive End, #94
Smith is the NFL's version of Iron Man. He never missed a game in his entire career until tearing his triceps this season. Even though he isn't fully healed, the beastly defender will tough it out and play in the Super Bowl with an arm brace.
Aldon Smith: Outside Linebacker, #99
This young talent is already breaking football records...and he's only 23. Aldon's 19.5 sacks this year is the sixth most sacks of any player in a season and set a 49er team record.
Dashon Goldson: Free Safety, #38
Hard-hitting Goldson is known for straddling the line between insanely aggressive and being a "dirty player." He's been fined for controversial helmet-to-helmet tackles, and is one of the fiercest players on the field. Although he's a monster player, we hear Goldson is one of the sweetest 49ers in person–go figure!
Frank Gore: Running Back, #21
The longest-tenured 49er is also the all-time 49er leader in rushing yards. Although Gore doesn't have top-end speed, his short bursts of quickness, brute strength, and ability to run close to the ground are astounding.
Michael Crabtree: Wide Receiver, #15
Crabtree has been an underachiever most of his professional career, but has come to life with Kaepernick as quarterback. His most famous moment came in college when he won a game for Texas Tech with a sideline straddling catch in the last seconds of the game against rival (and clear favorite) Texas.
Vernon Davis: Tight End, #85
A personal favorite around the 7x7 HQ, Davis is possibly the fastest player on the team, even with his enormous size. After being thrown out of a game by 49ers former coach Mike Singletary for "not focusing," Davis has been a leader on the team for the past two years under Harbaugh, and is our most dangerous receiving weapon.
Colin Kaepernick: Quarterback #7
When the 49ers' starting QB Alex Smith suffered a concussion in game 10 of the regular season and was forced to sit out the next two games, backup Kaepernick took over and wowed Harbaugh and the team. Although Smith had done a great job all season, there was no doubt that Kaepernick was physically more gifted than Smith, and, given the opportunity, he showed he was ready to play on a professional level. In a wildly controversial move, coach Harbaugh gave the starting QB position to Kaepernick even after Smith was cleared to play, leaving Smith as a backup and giving Kaepernick the opportunity of a lifetime.
Deeply spiritual and covered in religious tats, Kaepernick has the elite ability to throw and run; he set the record for rushing yards for a quarterback in an NFL playoff game. He's also somewhat of a physical phenom; he can throw a 94 MPH fastball, and was drafted by the Chicago Cubs. We're sure glad he chose football instead.