Super Bowl 50 Preview

By Anthony Carbonaro
Feb. 04, 2016

                                                          Carolina Panthers vs Denver Broncos

The year of the “dab” against the year of the old hurt 39 yr old Peyton Manning. Super Bowl 50 will be a battle of two really great defenses who have shown their stripes in the playoffs.

The swag and the new aura of the Panthers propelled them to a 15-1 record. Beating the Seahawks and Cardinals was a big test of how they matched up to the other great teams in the NFC and passed with flying colors.

Peyton Manning had one of his most disappointing regular seasons ever, but mainly due to injuries causing him to miss good part of the season. When Peyton played this year he had 9 touchdowns to 17 interceptions but for the most part he tried to play through really bad injuries that affected his play. The Broncos defense is the vocal point of the team. It showed when they beat Tom Brady by hitting him 23 times with consistent pressure where it was hard to find rhythm for the Patriots on offense.


Broncos X Factor : Player

CJ Anderson. 

If the Broncos want to win Super Bowl 50 and let Peyton ride off into the sunset, there needs to be a running game. CJ Anderson needs to have himself a pretty good game to extend drives and help the play action drives. The offensive line needs to give him open holes for this game. Carolina defense is too good and you play right into their hands if you play one dimensional. Keeping time of possession with the running game and not turning the ball over will be the biggest X Factor for Denver. CJ Anderson needs to be turnover free, shed tackles, and get 1st downs to open up Peyton’s passing game.

3 factors the Denver Broncos must do to win Super Bowl 50.

1) Peyton Manning cant turn the ball over. Having to be almost perfect, not throwing interceptions or fumbling, is a huge factor if the Broncos want any shot at winning the game.

2) The offensive line needs to protect Peyton Manning at all cost and create running lanes for CJ Anderson. The ability of protecting the quarterback and creating running lanes, lets Denver expose Carolina’s secondary. The front seven and the linebacking corps is the strongest point on the defense. Carolina is weaker in the secondary and with Peyton’s core of speedy receivers, it can create problems for Carolina.

3) Avoid the Panthers of big plays on offense. The speed of Ted Ginn Jr, toughness of Greg Olsen, and the ability of Cam Newton running all need to be kept at a minimal. The Denver defense must not allow Ten Ginn Jr to get behind the secondary. The combination of Cam’s arm and speed of Ted Ginn Jr, at an blink of an eye an touchdown is scored. Greg Olsen is a huge factor when playing between the numbers in the end zone or 30 yards down field because he is an big contributor of keeping drives alive. You cannot let Cam run the ball down your throat for huge first downs and huge plays because it just opens up their offense even more.


Carolina X Factor : Player

Cortland Finnegan. 

The veteran who was just signed this year after coming out of retirement, will be a huge factor in containing Denver’s deep threats. Josh Norman will for the most part be up against Demaryius Thomas with safety help over the top which makes Cortland the key. Denver is capable of having big plays with Emmanuel Sanders and Owen Daniels as the second and third options at receiver. If Cortland don’t get exposed and can handle his own against the other options, Denver can be in for a long day. Making Denver one dimensional is exactly what Carolina wants.

3 factors the Carolina Panthers must do to win Super Bowl 50.

1) The defensive line needs to put pressure on Peyton Manning and make him make mistakes. Peyton is well known for keeping his offense in a rhythm and reading defenses. The defensive line and linebacking core needs to have different schemes and special techniques to throw one of the best quarterbacks ever off his game. Pressure on the quarterback is the main ingredient for winning any game in the NFL. Causing turnovers and putting the ball in Cam Newton’s hands is a big factor in winning this game.

2) Cam Newton. The front-running MVP Cam Newton needs to be on his A game like he has been all year. The Broncos defense is coming and they are looking to repeat their performance from the NFC Championship game. Cam Newton’s deep passing ability to receivers can cause multiple problems for a defense. When pressured, the ability to run the football for first downs and create huge plays is something Cam feeds off. The energy and leadership of Cam Newton will play a huge factor in everyone else around him, playing better. “Dabbing” in the end zone only means more trouble for Denver.

3) Getting out to a quick early lead will set the tone. For the divisional playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks,  Jonathan Stewart for the first play of the game had a 59 yard run play, then 3 plays later they score a touchdown. Already leading 7-0, Seahawks got the ball back and on the second play, Luke Kuechly had a pick six with the score already 14-0 in the first 5 plays of the game, and was leading 31-0 at half-time. In the NFC Championship game, the Panthers were leading 24-7 against the Arizona Cardinals with 17 of those points coming in the first quarter. The Panthers ability to get out to quick leads will make Peyton force a lot of throws causing him to make mistakes, especially if CJ Anderson can't run the ball. Setting the tone on offense or defense and getting out to a big lead will be a major factor for Super Bowl 50.