Thirty-two teams enter the NFL season each September with the same goal in mind: going to the Super Bowl and ultimately winning the Lombardi Trophy. Each team strives to display the culmination of their seasons in the Super Bowl but only one team emerges victorious.
This year, the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos will square off in this 49-year tradition and will play in Super Bowl 50 at Levi’s Stadium in San Francisco. For the Panthers, this is only their second-ever Super Bowl appearance; their first with Cam Newton.
Conversely, this will be Denver’s eighth Super Bowl appearance; the latest being Super Bowl XLVIII two years ago in which Denver got blown out 43-8 by the Seattle Seahawks.
Only Sunday will reveal the winners of SB50, but if the Panthers can come out strong in the beginning of the game, they have a real chance of winning. But if they come out too excited or hyped up, they could blow it. Denver needs to play consistently the whole game and Peyton Manning needs to bring his A-game to San Francisco. Will we see some of Brock Osweiler on Sunday? Chances are, probably not, unless Peyton does really badly or gets injured.
My prediction: the Panthers win and Newton gets MVP. Not only of the game, but also of the whole season. If Carolina plays the way they have been all season, they’ll be nearly unstoppable on Sunday. I also think this will be Manning’s last game as an NFL player.
It was revealed last week that Manning told New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick that this might be his “last rodeo.” If the Broncos do win, I really do think Manning will retire and go out on top. Even if they don’t win, Manning will still be considered one of the best to ever play this great game called football. He can definitely count his career as a successful one with two different teams (which is rare).
But at 39 years old, Manning had one of his worst seasons this year with only nine touchdowns and 17 interceptions. That could be attributed to getting injured in the middle of the season and sitting out. But considering what Brock Osweiler accomplished in Manning’s absence, it can’t be denied that Denver has its next potential QB. In just eight games, Osweiler had 10 touchdowns and only six interceptions.
I don’t think anyone really saw Carolina’s nearly-undefeated season coming after going 7-8-1 in 2014. The Panthers went 14-0 before receiving their first and only loss in week 16 to the Atlanta Falcons. This was the first game the Panthers lost since more than a year earlier on Nov. 30, 2014, to the Minnesota Vikings. Cam Newton and the Panthers just kept pounding and dabbing all season long.