What everyone was hoping for last season is finally going to happen. On February 3rd, Super Bowl XLVII will feature a battle between two teams that are head coached by brothers. San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh and Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh both led their teams to victories in their respective conference championship games to set up this historic meeting.
Along with appearing in their first Super Bowl and their coaching pedigree, the Harbaugh brothers have something else in common. Jim and John have proven to be very bold in their decision-making. Both coaches made a critical choice during the regular season that made the difference in their teams’ success.
It was Week 11 when 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick stepped in as the starter after fellow quarterback Alex Smith was sidelined with a concussion suffered the previous week. Even after being cleared to play, Jim Harbaugh made the decision to stick with Kaepernick as the starter for the remainder of the season.
Many questioned the move by the Niners’ head coach, especially since Smith started the season leading San Francisco to a 6-2 record, and coming off the heels of a near-flawless performance against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 8 (18/19, 232 yards, and three touchdowns).
John Harbaugh’s decisive move took place during the month of December. During this time, John and the rest of the Ravens parted ways with offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, and promoted quarterbacks coach Jim Caldwell to OC.
What made this move so risky is the fact that teams usually make coaching changes during the offseason, not in the middle of the regular season. In addition, Baltimore was putting the offense in the hands of Caldwell, a coach who was never a coordinator. Caldwell was a head coach, but he never called plays in the NFL.
Both brash moves by the Harbaughs proved to be worth the risk. Jim and the 49ers now have a dual-threat quarterback that has made their offense one of the most explosive in the league. John and the Ravens finally have the offensive play-calling that the team and Ravens fans have been yearning for all season long.
Seeing how both brothers aren’t afraid to pull the trigger on a controversial choice, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some bold moves during the year’s biggest game by both teams.
Follow me on Twitter @ClydeASpeller