The Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers 24 to 10 last night. Denver’s defense will be remembered as one of the best ever. This was a once in a lifetime defense, considering all the players who are on contract years, but for this moment they stand together and helped Peyton Manning erase the embarrassing loss to the Seahawks two years earlier.
MVP Von Miller was unstoppable. The Panthers who scored the most points in the regular season looked lackluster and completely over-matched. Quarterback Cam Newton walked out on the press in the middle of the press conference, because obviously, taking a loss like that has to be hard. He was constantly harassed and hit, with no where to throw the ball.
The Broncos won despite Manning’s below average play, throwing for 141 yards and one interception. But as the old saying goes, “defense wins championships.”
The game was ugly. Both offenses struggled to find the end zone, but it was Denver’s defense that stripped the ball from Newton and jumped on it in the endzone to score the first touchdown, also stripping away the confidence the Panthers offense had all year. The front seven of the Broncos would outplay the offensive line of the Panthers virtually all day, leaving no room to run, and chasing down Newton.
In the third quarter, Newton rushed for first down and Von Miller tried to strip it from him, but he was ruled down by contact. The very next play Mike Tolbert fumbled on a ten yard run. That was a snap shot of the game: every time the Panthers made a play, the Denver defense made a bigger play.
So the Manning experiment will go down as a success. John Elway emphatically mimicked his owner, saying, “This one is for Pat,” but it was also for a team who never gave up despite the media’s love for the young Panthers. And Manning will most certainly walk out on top, like Elway did.
Congratulations to the Super Bowl Champions Denver Broncos.