When the Superdome went dark for over half an hour, and the Baltimore Ravens had a 22-point lead over the San Francisco 49ers, there were many theories flying through the social media landscape as to what caused it:
One was that the NFL was punking the viewers, and when the lights were turned back on, each respective Harbaugh brother would have ended up switching clothes and changing teams. Just to see if each could take the reverse role and win from the other side with a new team and half a game left.
Another was that the NIners, not wanting to see the beating continue, bribed stadium officials in order to use the 'von Trapp' method of escape by disappearing off the field, one by one, ne'er having to face the media or the horror of the second half.
However, when the lights came back on 34 minutes later, and a new, revitalized, almost possessed San Francisco team scored 17 unanswered points in just over four minutes, it began to seem as if the niners owed Energy New Orleans, the power company which maintains the Superdome, the MVP trophy. Should things continue to progress the way they seemed to be going, San Francisco was looking at winning a Super Bowl in which, at one point, they trailed by over 20 points. Suddenly, instead of thinking about what they wanted for dinner, the Niners were now thinking about a possible record breaking night.
In retrospect, how can anyone say the outage on the field didn't play a definite part in the swinging of momentum -- from the Ravens' side to San Francisco's? Sure, most of it rests with plays made- or not made -- on the field. But something definitely happened tonight.
And, odds are, it would've worked, too, had the 49ers not run a last minute drive that ended with a series of four of the most horrifically awful play calls you will ever see from a team just bursting with grade-A momentum, who, with their genie still in control, beat all the odds and were just five yards away from a Super Bowl victory for them and their genie in a bottle. Until their offensive coordinator decided to close up shop sixty seconds early.
Strange twists of fate can only take you so far. Ultimately, you have to close the deal.
Just look at the "Heidi Game" in 1968 -- the match-up between bitter rivals Oakland Raiders and N.Y. Jets, in which, the Jets were winning big as NBC cut away with just over a minute to play, and left the entire east coast watching the movie Heidi, while everyone on the west coast got to see the Raiders pull off one of the most amazingly improbable comebacks to win.
The Raiders weren't aware of what was going on but it didn't matter. That change in the current of the wind, the pent up energy of all those executives in the control room about to lose their job, manifested itself into some unforeseen set of circumstances for the Raiders. They got the job done. They closed the deal.
During the "Super Sunday Blackout," no one missed a play, but another electrically-charged mishap seemed to play a part in the momentum of the game, leaving the Ravens' sideline empty and returning to revitalize the lackluster 49ers. In other words, they got yo mojo.
Although you can't put your finger on it, it certainly appears there's definitely something connected between the human beings freaking out in the control room decades ago, and the kinetic energy of human beings freaking out on each other, this time on a national stage, that made tonight such an unusual event. That unharnessed energy, from both person and circuit box, merged, then reappeared, repackaged and re-purposed, as 5-hour ENERGY Drink Maxx for a team that, by all accounts, seemed completely out of steam.
Whatever went on there last night, whether fate or the electricity or maybe a combination of both played a part in changing the game's outcome. Two things are certain:
1. Apparently, it was Beyonce's sex appeal -- set way too hi, on 'hyperdrive' -- that blew the circuits directly after the half-time show.
2. Energy New Orleans said they can send someone out Thursday between the hours of 12-4pm to fix it, but you know they won't get there 'til at least 5.
Follow David Fagin on Twitter: www.twitter.com/nikchapman