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Blackout at the Superdome leads to a huge momentum shift in Super Bowl

An official looks on during a Superdome power outage in the second half of the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
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An official looks on during a Superdome power outage in the second half of the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

But it's hard not to intertwine the blackout and the complete momentum changed that happened afterward.

Although the 49ers' first play after the blackout was a failed third down conversion that led to a punt, San Francisco came back in a big way after that. A couple of stops by the defense helped. So did quarterback Colin Kaepernick heating up. He hit Michael Crabtree for a touchdown. After a short punt and a good return by Ted Ginn, Kaepernick's throw to Vernon Davis set up a touchdown run by Frank Gore.

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The 49ers scored two touchdowns in 2:21 to cut Baltimore's lead from 22 points to only eight points. From the time of the blackout to Gore's touchdown, the 49ers outgained the Ravens 106-16. Once again it was a close game. The 49ers got even closer after Ray Rice lost a fumble, and the Ravens had a running into the kicker penalty on a David Akers' missed field goal. Akers made the second attempt after the penalty and San Francisco trailed 28-23, giving the 49ers 17 unanswered points in 4:10.

After a Baltimore field goal, Kaepernick led a drive that he ended with a 15-yard touchdown run, the longest for a quarterback in Super Bowl history. The two-point conversion, however, was incomplete, leaving Baltimore with a 31-29 lead with less than eight minutes remaining in the game.

Although the blackout looked like a nightmare for the NFL and CBS when it happened, it might have had the effect of making a once one-sided Super Bowl a competitive affair late in the third quarter.

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