4. Too many weapons, even for Seattle’s D: Richard Sherman has the talent to shut down one of Denver’s weapons outside and a stout linebacking corps that features Wagner might be able to handle the Moreno-Ball combo. Plus, Earl Thomas might be the game’s premier safety, at least in terms of how much of the field he can cover deep.
But … then what? Let’s say Sherman finds himself on Demaryius Thomas and the line generates a little pressure on Manning and those linebackers box in the Denver run game. There’s still Eric Decker, Wes Welker, Julius Thomas and lesser-used threats like Jacob Tamme at Manning’s disposal. The Broncos did not score 30-plus points in 13 of 16 regular-season games by accident.
Break a leg, Seattle. No, really--break your legs trying to cover all of these weapons.
The Super Bag
The Pick: Denver 22, Seattle 19
Bill Simmons taking Peyton Manning and the Broncos in a SB? That's actually a pretty bad sign, given his 111-145-10 record this season. He's probably just trying to jinx Denver, because we all know who he's rooting for.
Jason Lisk and Ashley Fox are also picking Denver, most of the NFL.com writers are taking Seattle, and the CBS Sports.com and KSK crews slightly favor the Broncos; here are the other predictions we mentioned earlier.
Ape Predicts Seahawks Will Win Super Bowl
Eli the ape ran into an enclosure Thursday morning and swiftly knocked down a papier-mache helmet bearing the Seahawks logo, signaling his pick, said Erica Hansen of Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City.
“He made his pick without any hesitation,” Hansen said. That could mean bad news for Broncos fans. The 13-year-old primate hasn’t been wrong since 2006.
Raiders fans--always predictable, always making for the trees.
“We went back and improved a lot of our health benefits, both for former players and for current players, to the point where I think the health benefits that are provided to current NFL players are the best in the world. I’m proud of what we’ve been able to do with the union in improving those benefits.”
“The cost of trying to provide health care for every player that has ever played in the league was discussed with the union,” Goodell said as he continued to answer Davis. “It was determined these changes were the best changes, and that’s what we negotiated.”
See, kids? It's all how you frame an argument that counts.
The Matrix of Manning
The whirlwind also includes a host of decoys. Code words that represent a running play may be called when a pass play is the ultimate result so as not to tip off a defense. And some of what Manning says carries no meaning at all; it is designed to toy with defenders as they wait and wonder what play is coming.
We just want to know who came up with Fat Man.
'A Unique Day And Night'
I’ve got a feeling if Denver wins, fourth receiver Andre Caldwell or second tight end Jacob Tamme is going to be a headline player coming out of the game. Manning has to be thinking: In five-receiver sets, somebody has to be open.
Bubba or Tamme the key? That might be a bit of overthinking, there, PK. FWIW, King and most of the ESPN guys are picking the Broncos, while their beat guys are sticking with their teams; SI's gambling experts are taking the Seahawks and the points.
Most importantly, the Simpsons predicted a Denver victory nine years ago.
Is the Hall of Fame Process Broken?
Occasionally, it boils down to something far simpler than playing status or championships: You vote for my guy, and I’ll vote for yours.
“I’ve been in it for three years, and it happened one time,” says Glauber of such deal-making. “I was mortified. I didn’t like it. It was very uncomfortable. But I think that stuff is going by the wayside. There was quite a bit of it from what I heard 10 to 15 years ago.”
What a joke.
Super Bowl Profile: Richard Sherman
Since the regular season ended Sherman has been in coverage for 74 snaps and allowed no receptions.
Zero. Zip. Nada. Nothing.
He has been flagged for holding against the 49ers, but that play aside he has only been targeted twice over those 74 snaps. Sherman has been the very definition of shutdown since the lights went on and things got real.
Of course, with as many great targets as Peyton Manning has at his disposal, avoiding Sherman really doesn't present Denver with a problem.
“Give me another opportunity, and I’ll run a 4.4 for you.”
The Broncos provided Trevathan with that second chance and then some, after stopping his slide through the draft in Round 6. Trevathan’s story could have become a footnote there — the selection Denver used on him, No. 188 overall, was one of the picks acquired by trading Tim Tebow to the Jets.
In my opinion, I think they’ll take some of these shots early in the Super Bowl to see if they can get on the board quick. I think they’ll feel if they can get a couple touchdowns early, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning will get impatient against their defense.
It's been a while, and this is a different defense, but Denver did get hurt on some of those familiar play-action boots against Houston last year.