Culliver misses shot at redemption

Culliver misses shot at redemption
February 3, 2013, 7:30 pm
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Jacoby Jones caught a 56-yard touchdown on Chris Culliver's coverage. (AP)

After the Niners corner made offensive comments at Tuesday’s media day about how he’d receive a gay teammate, the second-year player was grilled and vilified.

On Sunday, anyone wishing to see him taken down another notch got their wish. The most notable instance of Culliver’s Travails came in the first half when Culliver lost Jacoby Jones on a third-and-10 moonball with 1:58 left in the first half.

As Jones circled back to make a play on the underthrown ball, Culliver sailed past like a kid jumping after an escaping balloon. Jones caught the ball, tumbled to the ground inside the 5-yard line and was able to get to his feet, run across the field and score to give the Ravens a 21-3 lead.

It was the most conspicuous play involving Culliver but it wasn’t the only one.

Earlier in the first half, Flacco – running for his life as he rolled to his right on a third-and-7 play – found Anquan Boldin for a 30-yard gain down to the Niners 34-yard line. It was a pass seemingly thrown up for grabs and it was between Boldin and Culliver to come down with it. Boldin pulled it in. Then yakked in Culliver’s face after the catch.

Culliver was also caught up in the wash on a 23-yard dart to tight end Ed Dickson on which Culliver got stuck going for the ball and/or the tackle and wound up getting neither. Three plays later, the Ravens were in the end zone with a 14-3 lead.

In the fourth, Culliver was flagged for a questionable pass interference on a third-and-9 play, extending a Ravens drive that ended with a field goal.

49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh was asked about the pass interference.

"The interference on Chris? Didn't think that was an interference. You're talking about the one that extended their drive when they made their second-to-last drive with the ball? Didn't see that as (pass interference)."

It was an inauspicious ending to a week Culliver would no doubt like to forget.

But it’s worth wondering if he’ll soon be able to.

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