With only two teams still alive in each conference, the chance for "bulletin board material" becomes much greater given the focus of the media on only a few teams. We have already had a couple instances that people can tout as bulletin board material, even though in reality it is nothing of the sort. Jim Harbaugh actually mentioned the idea of bulletin board material in discussing some comments Justin Tuck made about Alex Smith:
"I think there are going to be a lot of people running around this week trying to find bulletin board material. Take things out of context and stretch them. Look for that nugget and then can't wait to hurry back here and ask us, or them, what they thought of that. We need to really focus on our task here. This is a big game. It's against a great opponent. That's where our thoughts will be, not on the irrelevant things that show up in the newspaper. But people will be working hard, I predict. I see a lot of people in this room here.
Victor Cruz and the Giants acknowledged they are much happier playing the 49ers and the Saints. While this might seem like a slight, in reality it is a perfectly logical conclusion Cruz has reached. The Saints were dominant in the Superdome. The 49ers have played some great football at home, but the Saints were on another level at home that nobody could really match to a certain extent. Cruz probably shouldn't have provided the opportunity for the media to twist his words, but he makes a logical point.
This follows Vernon Davis' comments at halftime of the Giants-Packers game. He made an appearance on the FOX halftime show and when asked who he preferred, he said he was praying for a Giants win. Antrel Rolle followed that up with the usual, "be careful what you wish for." Once again, Vernon Davis was simply making a logical point that th 49ers wanted to play this NFC title game at home.
I really see no problem in a player proclaiming his team will win or making predictions of victory. While there can be questions about bulletin board material, if a player doesn't think his team can win, I'm not sure what he is doing out there. It's one thing to disparage the opposing team, but to proclaim your own greatness? I don't think it is particularly significant. I think bulletin board material can be of significance in some matchups, but in a game like this where two great teams are coming together, I think we can get past the BS.