Denver Broncos to represent the AFC in Super Bowl XLVIII
Jan 19, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos executive vice president of football operations John Elway and quarterback Peyton Manning (18) after the 2013 AFC championship playoff football game against the New England Patriots at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
The Denver Broncos proved Sunday afternoon why they were the No. 1 seeded team in the AFC as they defeated the New England Patriots 26-16 at Mile High Stadium.
Peyton Manning was on point against Tom Brady and the Patriots, passing for 400 yards and two touchdowns. Manning was 32-of-43, averaging 9.3 yards per pass completion.
Brady finished 24-of-38 for 277 yards with one passing touchdown and one rushing score.
But this day belonged to the Broncos, as it is their first trip to the Super Bowl since John Elway led the Broncos to a victory over the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl XXXII. That game turned out to be the final game for Elway.
As for this year’s Broncos team, if you remember correctly, the Houston Texans lost to the now-AFC Champions in Week 16 by a 37-13 score, where Manning broke the single-season touchdown passing mark.
The Broncos are the best team in the AFC by far this season, and that isn’t an easy feat. They won their first six games of the season until they lost to the Indianapolis Colts in Week 7.
After the first loss, the Broncos finished the regular season with a 7-2 record in their final nine games.
What impresses me about the Broncos besides their offense is how their defense is playing in the big moments late in the season and postseason. The stop on the Patriots’ two-point conversion was huge for the Broncos and proved to be a game changer.
Also, the Broncos finished 4-0 against the NFC this season, defeating every team in the NFC East.
Whomever the Broncos play next in the Super Bowl, I’d be hard pressed to bet against Manning and Co. in that game.