The San Francisco 49ers were inches away from a second consecutive trip to the Super Bowl. If it were not for the anticipation and wingspan of Richard Sherman, Colin Kaepernick may have connected with Michael Crabtree for a game-winning touchdown. The 49ers would have won the NFC championship game by one point.
The organization is no stranger to such a play. Perhaps the most recognized play in 49ers' history, "The Catch," happened in nearly identical circumstances. In 1982, with the 49ers trailing by six points in the NFC championship game, Montana sailed a pass into the end zone in the final minute. The difference 22 years ago was Dwight Clark caught the ball for the 49ers.
Déjà vu did not occur, but Montana and Clark will still be celebrating their famous moment this weekend. On Super Bowl Sunday, Montana and Clark will be honored at "The Catch" Game Day experience at Edison Ballroom in New York City.
Named after one of the NFL's most plays, the interactive football fan event will last from 4 p.m. to midnight ET. Along with Montana and Clark, New York Giants Super Bowl champions Howard Cross and Sean Landeta will be honored. NFL players set to be in attendance are Antonio Cromartie, Antwan Barnes, Peyton Hillis, Justin Tucker, Chykie Brown and Lardarius Webb. Other celebrities include comedian Tony Rock, supermodel and actress Angie Everhart, Miss USA 2013 Erin Brady, Miss USA 2012 Nana Meriwether and TV personality Tom Murro.
The event will feature a VIP meet and greet and pregame analysis from Montana and Clark, as well as a silent auction provided by Go Charity, Inc. The game will be aired on 20 flat-screen TVs and select guests will get to catch a pass from Montana at halftime.
General admission tickets will be $300 with an open bar and food prepared by Chef Mina Newman. A portion of ticket sales and silent auction proceeds will be donated to Autism Speaks.
"With the Super Bowl coming to NYC for the first time, I am excited to be involved in this incredible event and also pleased to see that Autism Speaks has been chosen to receive a portion of the event proceeds," Montana said in a press release.
Autism Speaks is dedicated to changing the future for those who struggle with autism spectrum disorders. The organization provides research into the causes, prevention, treatment and a possible cure for autism, and it seeks initiatives to raise autism awareness.
More specifically, Alec Elbert, Chief Strategy and Development Officer at Autism Speaks, said, "The proceeds from the auction will go towards Autism Speaks’ innovative research and advocacy initiatives for the 1 in 88 people affected by autism.”
Candlestick Park will never host another NFL game, and Montana and Clark are long retired, but the legacy of "The Catch" lives on. During this year's Super Bowl, the play will be the catalyst for a nearby watch party with proceeds going to charity.