And if they couldn't, the league championship still would not have ended where it temporarily stopped, with less than two minutes gone in the third quarter. The Lombardi Trophy goes to the winner after 60 minutes, not 32.
Commissioner Roger Goodell said Monday the Superdome had a backup power system which was about to be used during the Super Bowl's electrical outage. It wasn't needed because power started coming back at that time, he said.
Superdome and utility officials were still trying to nail down the precise cause of the 34-minute Super Bowl blackout, but league officials said that, because of the backup system, the game wasn't in danger of being postponed.
"That was not a consideration last night," NFL vice president of business operations Eric Grubman said at a news conference Monday. "That is not what was at play."
Goodell was sitting with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie during the game. The Meadowlands will host next year's Super Bowl.
"We already had the conversation," Goodell said about avoiding a repeat of the blackout. "This is clearly something that can be fixed, and it's clearly something that we can prepare for. And we will."
Grubman said Goodell has the "sole authority" to enforce any contingency plans, and was in perfect position to do so Sunday night.
"He was there and he had the full reports," Grubman said. "We were quickly able to determine we did not have a situation that would cause a permanent interruption in the game. There were no safety issues, we had multiple equipment and sources of power."
And if they didn't?
While declining to be specific, Grubman said the league has "backup plans" for continuing the game. Those plans all focus on playing the full 60 minutes, regardless of whether it is the same day or on another day.
So the Ravens, ahead 28-6 at the time of the partial blackout, wouldn't have simply been declared the winners. This isn't baseball, where half a game is considered official.
In the end, Baltimore still won, beating San Francisco 34-31. The momentum shifted tremendously after the lights went back on, however, with the 49ers rallying to make it 31-29 at one point in the fourth quarter, and missing a 2-point conversion pass that would have tied it.
Having to replay - or finish - the Super Bowl on another day would clearly have been a major headache for the NFL.
The Super Bowl invariably is the highest-rated television show of the year. Playing it any other time but Sunday evening would create trouble for the networks.
There also are travel and hotel considerations because the game is played at a neutral site, attracting thousands of visitors to the host city.
Most importantly, there are health and safety concerns. Making teams play a Thursday night game after one on Sunday has been heavily criticized by the players' union. A quick turnaround, such as finishing the Super Bowl on Monday, could be dangerous.
Plus, there are competitive balance decisions to weigh. What might be fair to one team could be a hindrance for another.
Several major sports, including the NFL, have dealt with emergencies that forced schedule changes. Just last year, the Daytona 500 was moved from Sunday afternoon to Monday night because of rain. But NASCAR often is forced to move races due to bad weather.
Same with golf tournaments, and if the USGA's major events are not won on Sunday, they end the next day with an 18-hole playoff.
Baseball, of course, is vulnerable to rainouts, too.
In the 2008 World Series, Game 5 at Philadelphia was stopped in the sixth inning because of rain with the Phillies and Tampa Bay tied at 2. The storms stuck around, and when play resumed two days later, the Phillies won the game and clinched the championship.
In the 1989 World Series, an earthquake rattled Candlestick Park minutes before the San Francisco Giants were set to host Oakland in Game 3. The Series resumed 10 days later, and the Athletics won twice to complete a sweep.
In 1988, the NHL dealt with a blackout very similar to what happened in the Superdome on Sunday night.
Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals between the Bruins and Oilers in Boston was tied 3-3 in the second period. Edmonton led the series 3-0.
A power outage eventually forced cancellation of the game, and the teams headed back to Edmonton for the next game, as previously scheduled. The Oilers completed their sweep 6-3 at home.
The other matchup that compares to the Super Bowl is the World Cup final at the end of the monthlong soccer tournament. FIFA has provisions for a replay, but in the era of penalty-kick shootouts, that won't happen - unless there are extenuating circumstances.
Such as a power failure.
So FIFA demands that local organizers to ensure that every stadium has an emergency independent power generator.
The NFL requires its stadiums to comply with all applicable local building codes and laws, which normally require the kind of backup system the Superdome has.
AP Sports Writers Ben Walker and Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this story.
The Virginia Republican, appearing on CBS's "This Morning," previews a major policy address he'll give Tuesday to the conservative-oriented American Enterprise Institute, saying the GOP must "explain why we're doing what we're doing."
Cantor says the party must persuade people that its policies will help them. He says the party can - and should - be in the lead on issues like economic growth, job creation, immigration and education. He says, quote, "We've got to address the plight of so many working Americans and those who don't have work and say, yes - we have policies that will work." Cantor says he'll work for bipartisan cooperation in Washington.
The charges would mark the first enforcement action the government has taken against a major rating agency involving the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.
S&P said Monday that the Justice Department had informed the rating agency that it intends to file a civil lawsuit focusing on S&P's ratings of mortgage debt in 2007.
The action does not involve any criminal allegations. Critics have long complained about the government's failure to bring criminal charges against any major Wall Street players involved in the financial crisis. Criminal charges would require a higher burden of proof and carry the threat of jail time.
If S&P is eventually found to have committed civil violations, it could face fines and limits on how it does business.
S&P denies any wrongdoing and says any lawsuit would be without merit.
A federal lawsuit would "disregard" the fact that S&P reviewed the same data on risky mortgages as U.S. government officials, who said publicly in 2007 that the problems in the subprime mortgage market appeared to be limited, the company said in a statement.
In the statement, S&P said it "deeply regrets" that its ratings on some securities "failed to fully anticipate the rapidly deteriorating conditions in the U.S. mortgage market during that tumultuous time."
Justice Department spokeswoman Nanda Chitre declined to comment on the matter.
According to a report in the New York Times, the lawsuit will likely be brought this week after settlement talks between the Justice Department and S&P broke down last week. The talks collapsed over federal authorities' insistence that a settlement involve at least $1 billion, the Times reported.
Judges have previously thrown out claims brought by investors against the rating agencies, on the grounds that their ratings amount to free speech protected by the First Amendment.
But that argument hasn't always succeeded in cases involving investments like those in the expected S&P suit, according to research by the Brattle Group, a consulting firm. That's because those ratings weren't published widely, as most bond ratings are. As a result, several courts have ruled that those ratings do not enjoy free-speech protection.
S&P is a unit of New York-based McGraw-Hill Cos. McGraw-Hill's stock plunged nearly 14 percent Monday after reports surfaced about the government's expected lawsuit.
Moody's Corp., the parent of Moody's Investors Service, another rating agency, closed down nearly 11 percent. The two companies' stocks suffered the biggest percentage drops in the S&P 500 index, which finished down slightly more than 1 percent.
S&P, Moody's, and Fitch Ratings, the third major rating agency, have been blamed for helping fuel the financial crisis by assigning AAA ratings to trillions of dollars in risky securities backed by subprime mortgages. The securities collapsed once the housing bubble burst and home-loan delinquencies soared. Major U.S. banks absorbed tens of billions in losses.
The rating agencies are important arbiters of the creditworthiness of securities traded around the world. The grades they assign can affect a company's ability to raise or borrow money and how much investors will pay for securities it issues.
The securities in the anticipated federal lawsuit are collateralized debt offerings. CDOs are investment vehicles that contain many underlying mortgage loans.
A CDO generally gains in value if borrowers repay. But a wave of defaults can cause them to tumble in value. Soured CDOs contributed to, and intensified, the financial crisis.
Critics have long argued that rating agencies have an inherent conflict of interest: They're paid by the same companies whose products and credit they rate. The agencies have been accused of issuing unduly high ratings before the crisis, in part because of pressure from banks they desired as clients.
Budweiser says they were overwhelmed with name suggestions for their newly born Clydesdales that they've decided to name two, one of which after baseball Hall of Famer Stan "The Man" Musial.
The beer giant announced the decision via social media last night, saying, "Meet Hope, and Stan" - the two foals were born last month in Boonville, Missouri.