NEW ORLEANS -- Led by the likes of linebackers Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs, the Baltimore Ravens are loud and passionate on the field and often make waves with their words afterward.
But in their first appearance after arriving in New Orleans on Monday, the Ravens had kind words for the 49ers, especially Colin Kaepernick, a far cry stylistically from the quarterbacks (Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck) whom Baltimore beat to get to the Super Bowl.
"I like the way (Kaepernick) plays," Suggs said. "He's good for the game, him and Robert Griffin III. I like his game."
Lewis called Kaepernick "one of those freakish athletes" and compared him to Randall Cunningham.
"He can run very, very well," Lewis said. "A good athlete. You can tell he is a real good athlete. I am fond of the kid."
The Ravens' defensive stars might like Kaepernick's dual-threat style, but they are also tasked with trying to stop him. Baltimore has had mixed results when facing similar challenges. Philadelphia's Michael Vick had 405 total yards against the Ravens in September, but Baltimore largely held Washington's Griffin in check in December.
The Ravens lost both games.
"Hopefully he's not doing too much -- he's not giving us too much of Colin Kaepernick," Suggs said. "He's fared pretty good against the defenses that he's seen, but we're a defense that likes a challenge. We accept it."
But plans change, and Harbaugh was thrilled with Monday's surprise. Thousands of fans showed up at Baltimore's Inner Harbor to help send the Ravens off to the Super Bowl.
"We just had a great time," Harbaugh said. "The thing through the Inner Harbor was a big deal. That was something we all were surprised by a little bit."
Lewis took the microphone in front of the raucous crowd and gave a short speech, saying, "We're not going to New Orleans for nothing else but to bring a ring back to Baltimore."
Asked how many times Jim could answer the same questions this week without snapping, John said, "Take a shot and just keep asking him -- that's OK with us," adding, "You can ask me the same question time and time again, you're just going to get the same answer."