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Sunday, February 3, 2013
Two players to watch for 49ers vs. Ravens

By Mike Sando

NEW ORLEANS -- The Baltimore Ravens' defense dominated the right side of the San Francisco 49ers' offensive line during a 2011 game in Baltimore.

The 49ers made a significant upgrade since then by moving Alex Boone into the lineup at right guard. Anthony Davis remains the right tackle. Davis is less than three months past his 23rd birthday and he already owns 52 career starts, counting playoffs.

The 49ers' offensive line has given quarterback Colin Kaepernick an exceptionally clean pocket during playoff victories against Green Bay and Atlanta. San Francisco matched up well against those defenses. Both lacked exceptional speed. Both lacked exceptional size. The Ravens are bigger. San Francisco can probably expect a tougher challenge.

How well Boone and Davis fare on that right side will be key for the 49ers. Kaepernick's mobility is a big asset for both. He can turn potential sacks into big rushing gains. Former starter Alex Smith had a harder time doing that. He took nine sacks in that game at Baltimore last season. The Ravens won it, 16-6.