In recent years, it’s become something of a tradition for someone from the losing team of a playoff game to contend that the final score was not indicative of who was the better team.
Sometimes it’s a matter of the losing team beating itself and sometimes it’s explained away as a couple of plays changing the outcome of the game. 49ers running back Frank Gore went the latter route after his team’s comeback in Super Bowl XLVII fell short in the final moments.
“They got away with one,” Gore said, via the Associated Press. “We showed we were the better team. It was just a couple plays here, a couple plays there.”
It’s like spitting into the wind to point out that just about every football game comes down to a couple of plays here or there. We’ve long been comfortable saying the team that makes those plays is the better team, but won’t argue it too strenuously because Gore’s comment calls to mind the 49ers’ failure to score a touchdown after getting a first down on the Baltimore 7-yard line with 2:39 left to play.
Neither Gore nor Colin Kaepernick ran the ball on any of those four plays, something of a head scratcher given the fact that they’d combined for 172 yards up to that point in the game and Gore had just run 33 yards to put the team in prime scoring position. When asked why Gore didn’t get a touch, Jim Harbaugh simply said that the team had different plays called. Those plays failed and the 49ers’ comeback wound up falling short
Gore said he wasn’t willing to second-guess the play calling. He must have been tired from second-guessing the final score.