Super Bowl 2013: Potential Unsung Heroes in New Orleans Showdown

Pete SchauerCorrespondent IJanuary 26, 2013

FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 16:  Tight end Delanie Walker #46 of the San Francisco 49ers celebrates a touchdown pass from quarterback Colin Kaepernick #7 in the second quarter against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on December 16, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

Super Bowl history is usually written by big-name players, but what about the guys who do the little things to put their team in the position to win?

Super Bowl XLVII boasts some big names: Ray Lewis, Colin Kaepernick, Ray Rice, Frank Gore and Anquan Boldin, to name a few.

That said, let's take a look at the potential unsung heroes in Super Bowl XLVII.


Dennis Pitta

As arguably the most underrated tight end in the NFL, Dennis Pitta is seeing his career season spill over into the playoffs.

After going for 669 yards and seven touchdowns during the regular season, Pitta found the end zone against the Indianapolis Colts in the Wild Card round and has gained 55 receiving yards in back-to-back postseason games.

Pitta has been targeted 14 times this postseason and can really be an X-factor for Baltimore if San Francisco takes away Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith.

He's not the biggest star on the Ravens, but Pitta can be a big issue for the 49ers' defense in New Orleans.


Delanie Walker

His statistics don't reflect it, but Delanie Walker has a propensity for making big plays for the 49ers' offense.

With a linebacker likely sticking Walker in the passing game, he'll have an opportunity to make an impact for the Niners.

Walker doesn't necessarily have to make an impact through the air, as he's an excellent run-blocker and perfect decoy for his teammates.

He's not going to fill up the stat sheet, but Walker will make his mark on this game.

Bernard Pierce

Everyone talks about Ray Rice—and rightly so—but Bernard Pierce has really come on of late for Baltimore.

He put on a show against the New York Giants in Week 16, rushing for 123 yards on just 14 carries.

Against the Colts in the Wild-Card round, Pierce again went over the 100-yard mark on just 13 carries and was a big part of Baltimore's offense in the AFC Championship win over the New England Patriots.

Pierce likely won't see too many carries, but from what we've seen out of him so far this season, he has the potential to be a difference-maker for the Ravens.


Vernon Davis

Davis is the least likely to be classified as an unsung hero because of his status as one of the NFL's best tight ends, but the emergence of Michael Crabtree and Colin Kaepernick has some forgetting about the seven-year veteran.

I already detailed why I think Davis is the ultimate X-factor in Super Bowl XLVII, but with all the attention surrounding Kaepernick, Davis has flown under the radar.

He has a history of making big plays in the postseason—just ask the New Orleans Saints—and will likely be overshadowed because of the running abilities of the 49ers' offense, with the likes of Kaepernick, Frank Gore and LaMichael James.

Given my prediction of San Francisco winning Super Bowl XLVII, I like Davis' chances of being the unsung hero on Feb. 3 in New Orleans.


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