UNITED STATES—It’s the one time of year, where literally EVERYTHING stops: it’s Super Bowl Sunday. And this isn’t just any Super Bowl; it’s the 50th anniversary which is the one time of year that EVERYONE, all ethnicities, all genders join in celebrating all things sports, food, commercials and TV.
For this epic battle, the Denver Broncos courtesy of Peyton Manning did battle with Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Before we talk about the big game, we first have to discuss what things led up the big game. The celebration kicked off with the NFL paying tribute to the past MVPs of the big dance, which I thought was quite fitting. I mean we’re celebrating 50 years people.
Songstress Lady Gaga took the stage to sing the National Anthem and she put a unique spin on what many consider one of the most difficult songs ever to sing. She surely showcased her pipes and a bit of flair to deliver her own rendition that was quite memorable to say the least. Carolina won the coin toss and decided to defer to Denver to kick off the game.
Peyton really kicked off the game strong with a strong drive in the first 2 minutes of the game placing the Broncos in the position to place points on the board a lot sooner than expected. A field goal would have to settle at the hands of Brandon McManus who gave Denver the lead 3-0 with a little over 10 minutes left in the first quarter. Wow, Denver’s defense didn’t give Cam or the Panthers anytime to make moves forcing them to punt during their first possession.
The Panthers put the pressure on Denver forcing them to punt without the ability to move much yardage. A controversial catch by Panthers player Cotchery led to a halt in gameplay, but after seeing the review, that might have been a bad call on the officials because it looked like Cotchery did indeed have possession of the ball. Cam Newton got pummeled which resulted in a fumble that allowed the Broncos to score a touchdown, giving Denver a 10-point lead in the first quarter. Newton got into his rhythm in the second quarter deciding to run the ball on several occasions giving him the opportunity to get his team back into the game. The frustration grew on Talib who grabbed the facemask of Panther player Corey Brown. Jeez, the guy needs to cool it; he’s going to ruin this for the Broncos.
With the snap of a finger, the Panthers are now back in the game after a touchdown by Jonathan Stewart cutting Denver’s lead by 3. Norwood moved a 61-yard return on a punt from Carolina to place the Broncos in the position to score a second touchdown, but the Panthers defense halted the team to another field goal giving them a lead of 13-7. Not much happened beyond the back and forth of defense between both teams to close out the second quarter. Must say the game is pretty even matched at the moment.
Taking a bit of a break from the sport, the Pepsi Halftime Show kicked off with Coldplay and special guests Beyonce and Bruno Mars. Headliner Coldplay kicked off the entertainment, but it was not as exciting as I hoped. Bruno Mars than took the stage with assistance from Mark Ronson to perform their inescapable hit “Uptown Funk” that was full of plenty of funk and soul. Those dance moves were pretty neat also. Beyonce later took to the stage to perform her newest hit “Formation.” Seeing that dance-off between Bruno Mars and Beyonce was epic. Will admit it would have been even more fun if it had been just Beyonce or Bruno Mars performing the entire set.
The third quarter kicked off with Carolina in possession; doing all in their power to get back into the game. They went for a field goal to cut the deficit, but it was ruled no good. The Broncos responded with another field goal giving them a 16-7 lead. Fed up with the lack of plays, Newton threw a long way for Brown which put the Panthers back into contention to place some points on the board, but an interception proved costly for Newton as the Broncos capitalized on another mistake. The third quarter proved another disaster for the Panthers as they went scoreless yet again.
The fourth quarter kicked off with Denver in possession and Carolina needed to put some points on the board to prevent their dreams from coming to an end. Carolina capitalized on a turnover from Peyton Manning, but Newton couldn’t make anything happen for a TD, so the team settled for a field goal. So with less than 10 minutes in the fourth quarter the score was 10-16 with Denver holding a 6-point lead.
That isn’t good news for Denver because all it takes is one TD from the Panthers to tie-up the game and go for the win with the extra point. With less than 4 minutes in the game, Von Miller knocked the ball out of the hands of Cam which gave the Broncos the chance for a touchdown to nail the coffin in the game, with C.J. Anderson scoring the TD giving Denver a 22-10 lead.
To add to their lead, Denver went for a 2-point conversion which was completed without any obstacle. Yup, with less than 3 minutes, Denver dashed the hopes of Carolina capturing a Super Bowl win. Only way Carolina could make that happen is by scoring 2 TDs in less than 3 minutes; is it impossible no, but with the level of defense that Denver has been playing all game it seemed impossible for Panthers Quarterback Cam Newton to pull off such an upset. Cam was sacked seven times, yes, seven times during the game, where was his defense when he needed them most and the guy was none too happy.
That’s it people, Peyton Manning who many expected to hang up his helmet after this Super Bowl game took the Broncos to the Super Bowl and ended their season with the biggest prize of them all! With a final score of 24-10, the Carolina Panthers proved to be no match for the Denver Broncos and their defense.
Many people expected Carolina to steam roll the Broncos, but never underestimate the underdog people. It’s the perfect, and I mean perfect send-off for who I consider one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Well done Denver, well done! It was fun to watch.